Library in the Miller Center

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Locating Scholarly Articles

What is a Scholarly Article?

Professors also call these academic, refereed, peer reviewed, research-based, or scientific articles. These usually have:

  • Citations (footnotes)
  • Bibliography (list of works used at the end of the article)
  • Author’s name and credentials
  • Specialized language
  • Journal title will often include words like Journal, Bulletin, Review, Quarterly, etc.
  • They have gone through the peer review process in which experts in the discipline double check the methods and results before an article is published.
  • Examples: Sex Roles, American Journal of Education, Journal of Business, etc.

Note: Popular magazines (e.g., Time, Newsweek) and newspapers are not scholarly and lack most of the above characteristics.


How do I find articles by Searching in Databases?

  1. Go to the Library homepage (
  2. Click on the Articles search tab
  3. Choose a topic area and search for keywords that describe your topic. You might need to change your keywords a few times until you get good results. Alternatively, you can click on All Databases to select a specific database to search (i.e. ERIC (Education), ABI/INFORM (Business), JSTOR, PsycINFO, etc.)

Tip: Finding scholarly articles can be easier when searching a single database because you can usually limit your search to just scholarly journals.

Tip: If you get 0 results-take out little words like if, in, it, is, a, of, etc. out of your search and check the spelling.

How can I get the article electronically?

  • Click on PDF, HTML or FULL TEXT or something similar if available. This will give you the full-text of the article.
  • If these options aren't there, click on the FindIt! Findit! button. This will search all of our databases to see if we have the article available electronically. If full text is available, click on the Go button.

What if the article is in print, microfilm or microfiche?

  • Sometimes when you click the FindIt! Findit! button, the full text isn’t available electronically. Instead you will see the volumes SCSU has available or you have the option to search the SCSU catalog MnPALS–to see if SCSU owns the journal in print, microfilm or microfiche.
  • Double check the year of the article. Then write down the following information: “Article Title.” Author. Journal Title. Date. Volume, Number (issue), Pages.
  • Check which form the journal is in (current periodicals, bound, fiche or film) and go make a photocopy or read the article.
    Check SCSU Library Catalog to see if we have the journal in print, microfilm or microfiche. OR
    Check the year of your citation and the years the Library has in print, microfilm, and microfiche.

Where are journals located in the Miller Center?

  • Current Periodicals (1st West NW corner)
    • Alphabetical by journal title; stacked on shelves.
    • Most titles will have the current and previous year on the shelves.
  • Bound (Basement West)
    • In basement, turn right, go to second aisle.
    • Bound journals are on right hand side, arranged alphabetically by journal title.
  • Fiche [Microfiche] (1st West, gray cabinets)
    • Go to the far side of the cabinet furthest to right.
    • Titles are arranged alphabetically by the journal title.
  • Film [Microfilm] (1st West, gray cabinets)
    • Located in cabinets after microfiche.
    • Titles are arranged alphabetically by the journal title.

What if I need articles from a specific journal?

  1. Go to the Library homepage (
  2. Click on the Articles search tab
  3. Click on Journal/Newspaper Title Search
  4. Search by journal title or keywords (in the order they appear in the journal title)
  5. If the title is listed, click on the journal title link. If your journal is not found, you may use Interlibrary Loan to request an article within that publication.
  6. Use the year of your article to determine the format (bound, fiche, film, current, electronic, etc.). Locate the article within the library. You may photocopy it for your reading convenience.
    Read the locations to know where specific volumes are in the Miller Center or click the database link to get electronic full text.

How do I get an article that SCSU doesn't have (InterLibrary Loan-ILL)?

  1. Sometimes when you click the FindIt! Findit! button, the full text isn’t available electronically or in print/microfilm/microfiche. Instead you will see InterLibrary Loan. Just click the Go button to request your item.Use InterLibrary Loan from the FindIt! menu to get items we do not have access to.
  2. If you are not using the FindIt! button you can go to the library homepage. Click Interlibrary Loan (ILL) under Quick Links.
  3. Simply enter your barcode number (14-digit number on back of your Campus ID card) and password (usually your last name). Fill out the form with complete information (title, author, year, volume, pages).
  4. You may request electronic delivery to your HuskyNet e-mail account. Otherwise, pick up interlibrary loan articles at the Circulation Desk on 1st West. Most articles will arrive within 3-7 days. To find out if the item has arrived, check at the Circulation Desk or call 308-3083. The photo-copy is yours to keep.

Tip: There is no charge for this service.

How can I get help?

If you have questions, Ask A Librarian at the Reference Desk on 1st West (308-4755) or e-mail

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