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Database Tutorials

Gale Databases - The Basics

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Gale offers an extensive range of databases across a multitude of genres. They include Primary Sources, nursing journals, US History, women's issues, diversity studies, health and wellness, and so much more. Each Gale search engine offers slightly different but powerful search tools to expedite your information search.

The pages at the top of this tutorial provide basic guidance on how to search within the Gale databases. However, each search engine offers different, specialized tools that yield better search results for you research needs. To see more details on which search engines best meet your needs, check out the individual descriptions below, or by accessing the navigation menu under Gale on the left of your screen.

Most of the Gale databases have very similar search capabilities and results pages. The exceptions to this are Gale Primary Sources and Gale NewsVault. Please refer to their specific tutorials down below on the Gale tutorial page.

Here you can see a few examples of Gale database home pages where you will start your search.

You can choose to do a basic search in the search box using a few terms or phrases (1) or you can select Advance Search (2) and add more terms, qualifiers, and limiters to conduct a more focused search.

In some databases, you will have the option to browse by discipline or subject (3). And there may be links to some of Gale's specialized search tools (4), which are discussed in more detail under the individual database descriptions further down in this tutorial.

Other Gale search engines, such as PowerSearch, will give you the option to choose which specific databases to include or exclude in a search (5).


If you choose the Advanced Search, you will be able to enter your search terms/phrases (6) along with a variety of qualifiers and limiters (7) to help focus your search for more accurate search results. 


Once you have submitted your search terms, you will be brought to a results page that will look similar to the one below. 

At the top (1) you will see the types of materials retrieved in your search, such as academic journals, books, and news articles. If you wish, you can narrow your search to a particular format by clicking on any of these links. 

Below that, you can see filters (2) that are already applied to your search. To the left (3) there are boxes with more filters to help focus your search.

Back on the left, you will find highlighted in blue titles of articles (4) related to your search. Directly below that (5) is a small excerpt to give you more information about that particular article. 

If, after browsing through the titles you find they don't quite fit what you are looking for, you can always try using the Topic Finder tool (6) located in some databases on the right of the page.

Once you find a title and description that you think fits your topic, you can click on the blue highlighted title, and it will bring you to the article page, which may look like this.


The title (1) is clearly marked at the top of the page. Next, on the left, you will find the authors of the document (2) along with the date of publication. Over on the right (3) is the DOI - this is very important, both for finding the article again, and for your references should you choose to use this document. Below the line, your article will start (4), and you can browse the abstract (if there is one) to see if you want to read more of the article, or if you need to move on to something else. On the left in a blue box (5) are articles links that relate to the one you just chose, and could be other resources for your research.

If you find an article that you want to use for your research, you have several options on how to access it. You can continue reading on the article screen, or you can download a PDF of the article (1). Alternatively, you can choose to print the article (2), or email it to yourself or someone else (3). If you want to set the article aside and come back to it at a later time, you can click on the Get Link (4) which will provide you with a link that will bring you right back to that article in that database as long as you are logged in through Geisel Library. There are also icons just above the article (5) that provide you with other means of sharing or saving the article. 

If you decide to use a particular article, or even if you think you might use it, it is always a good idea to get a citation for the source. You can click on the Cite icon at the top of the page.

When you click on it, a box will pop up with a citation of the article. At the top, you can pick which citation format you would like to use (ie MLA, APA, etc). You can then click Select, copy and then paste your citation to a document or email. Or, if you are using a reference manager program such as EasyBib or RefWorks, you can chose to export the citation to that program. Just be sure to double check the formatting of your citation - your professor might prefer a variation on the format used in the citation generator. 


Gale PowerSearch

Gale Power Search allows you to search across all of the database options at once!

On top of that, Gale Power Search offers some additional tools to aid in your research. This includes the Topic FinderSubject Guide Finder, and Publication Search

Topic Finder

According to Gale, the Topic Finder uses an algorithm to process the titles, subjects and roughly the first 100 words of your search's top results and generates a visual diagram of the most prominent keywords in your search. It can reveal some interesting, previously not considered connections between terms. 

You can display the results of the Topic Finder either in the form of:

                                         Tiles                                                 Or                                              Wheel


Subject Guide Finder

You can use the Subject Guide Finder to find articles that are tagged with specific subject terms. Results will contain subdivisions that may help you narrow down your search or search terms.

Publication Search

If you want to browse or search through a specific publication, you can use the Publication Search to find it. You can also elect to see all 39,298 (currently) publications available in Gale Power Search to browse for titles that might fit with your area of study.

Gale Literary Sources

Gale Literary Source executes a search across all of Gales literary databases. Currently, Geisel has access to Gale Literature Resource Center and Gale Literature: LitFinder. As more databases are created and/or acquired by Geisel, they will be automatically added to this integrated search database. 

This database also includes two helpful tools: Topic Finder and Term Frequency.

Topic Finder

According to Gale, The Topic finder uses an algorithm to process the titles, subjects and roughly the first 100 words of your search's top results and generates a visual diagram of the most prominent keywords in your search. It can reveal some interesting, previously not considered connections between terms. 

You can display the results of the Topic Finder either in the form of:

                                            Tiles                                              Or                                       Wheel


Term Frequency

This tool allows you to look at the frequency of terms or phrases over time. You can then choose a year or year range in which to explore available articles. You can even run comparisons between different terms or phrases to see how they waxed or waned in popular use in isolation or compared to each other.

Gale Primary Sources

You can search more specifically by subject or content using Gale Primary Sources, which provides a guide of all the different databases available to you through our library.

Gale Primary Sources allows you to view each of the various databases available through Geisel Library. You can view all of the databases in alphabetical order, or look at specific collections, such as Primary Sources, eBooks, or In Context.

PLEASE NOTE: You cannot conduct a term/phrase search through the search box on the main page of Gale Primary Sources. It will only search through the titles of the various databases. You must choose a database first and then conduct your term/phrase search within that database.

Refer to Searching the Databases tab in the Basics section at the top of this tutorial for general instructions on conducting searches in individual databases.

Gale eBooks

Gale eBooks provides access to online books across a multitude of genres. You can do a basic or advanced search by terms and phrases, or you can browse by subject collections.

Gale NewsVault

If you are specifically searching for news articles, you can focus your search through Gale News Vault, searching all of Gales newspaper archives at one time.

In the Search Collections box on the right, you can choose to search by:

  1. Keyword - search significant fields such as titles, authors and other key term fields.
  2. Entire Document - search the entire document for the terms you put into the search box, including in the fields already covered by the Keyword search.
  3. Date - search for articles published on a specific date 

You can select to search within specific collections or check the All box to search all collections. Click the Search button.


The Search Results page will appear and you can use the sidebar options on the left to further refine your search by date, title of publication, location of publication, and article type. Titles of the articles are located in the middle of the page along with the name of the publication, options to view article or page, to retrieve information on the publication, and to browse the issue.


You can also click on the Advance Search on the homepage of the database and use more specific search queries to refine your search right from the start.