Skip to main content

ENGLISH 105-6: Literatures of Addiction (Carmichael): Books

Finding books with NUsearch (Video)

Finding Books

Book Location Guide

Searching with keywords

Keyword searching with one or a few words or phrases is a great way to start your research.  It's flexible and forgiving.  The challenge may be that the search can yield too few, too many, or a certain number of irrelevant results.  However, a good keyword search can also find great results and lead to good subject headings!

Examples:

"alcohol addiction" and cost  
alcohol and addiction and cost
alcohol and (addiction OR abuse) and cost

Searching with subject headings

Subject headings or pre-defined "controlled vocabulary" terms or phrases are assigned to every book or article you find in NUsearch or a particular database.  If you don't know what subject headings to search, a keyword search can lead you to those important headings (sometimes called descriptors). The right subject headings can yield relevant search results.  In addition, you can narrow down to sub-headings or sometimes even jump to broader or related subjects.

Examples of subject headings in NUsearch:

Substance abuse -- Social aspects -- United States

Alcohol -- Health aspects -- Statistics

Substance-Related Disorders -- economics