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ProQuest Central


Basic Searching

You will automatically be brought to the Basic Searching page if you get to ProQuest Central from anywhere on our websites. If you're just looking to browse articles on your topic without much concern for specificity, you may want to use the Basic Search function. The Basic Search page looks like this:

ProQuest Central homepage basic search screenshot

  • Type your search terms into the text box
  • From here, the only ways you can limit your results are by checking either of the two boxes directly below the search box
    • By selecting "Full Text", you will only get results that you have access to in full in this database (aka: no articles with WebBridge will appear)
    • By selecting "Peer Reviewed", you will only get scholarly journals, as they will all go through a review process.
  • Click "Search"


Advanced Searching

You will automatically be brought to the Basic Searching page if you get to ProQuest Central from anywhere on our websites. In advanced searching, you are given more ability to pinpoint exactly the kinds of articles you would like to see in your results. To get to Advanced Searching from Basic Searching, click on the "Advanced Search" tab directly beneath "ProQuest Central". Your screen will then look like this:

ProQuest Advanced Search screenshot

  • In order to search by author’s name, title, subject term, etc., use the dropdown menu by the search box to select the appropriate field.
    • If you do not choose an option from this menu, the database will automatically search your term in all the article citation fields, including the abstract and full text of the article
    • If you want to search everything EXCEPT the full text, simply use the dropdown menu and select the first option: "Anywhere except full text - NOFT"
  • To broaden or narrow your search results, use the ‘AND’ dropdown menus before the 2nd text box
    • There will be three options: AND (which is automatically chosen), OR, & NOT
    • AND: will only display results that include both/all the search terms
    • OR: will display all results with either/any of the search terms
    • NOT: will display results with the previous search terms, but will leave out results that include the following search term
  • If you need more than the two provided text boxes for search terms, click the plus button that says "Add a row" and use as normal
  • Before you search, you can limit your results by scrolling to the boxes at the bottom of the screen:
    • You can limit by date of publication, type of publication, language, just print materials, just full-text materials, etc.
    • Check the boxes or click the options in the lists that you would like to limit by
    • This is optional - all of these filters will appear again on your result page (see below)
  • When you are ready, click the green "Search" button
Searching Tips!
  • Not sure which word ending to use?
    • Attach an * to the base of your term, and the database will search for words that start with that string of letter, regardless of what the ending is.
    • Example: searching for feminis* will pull results for both "feminist" and "feminism", but not things like "feminine", which is missing the "s".
    • You can see up above that I used one at the end of "poli*" so I would get results for policy, politics, political, politicians, etc.
  • Want to search for an entire phrase? 
    • Surround your phrase with " ", and the database will search for those words in that order without anything in between
    • Example: "critical feminist theory" will return results JUST with those exact words in that exact order. So you won't get results that are something along the lines of "Feminists are critical of X theory".
    • You can see up above that I used quotation marks around "dungeons & dragons" because I was researching the game by that name, and wasn't interested in articles about medieval dungeons or mythological dragons.



Limiting and Reading Results

Once you click the search button, you will get a list of resources, which will look like the image below:

ProQuest results page screenshot

From here, you can:

  • Limit the results showing by clicking on the boxes on the left side of the screen that are below the "Limit to" label
    • In this list, you can narrow your results based on date of publication, type of resource (book, article, newspaper, etc), subject terms, language, etc.
    • You'll also notice two links directly below "Limit to" (and replicated above your total number of results):
      • By selecting "Full Text", you will only get results that you have access to in full in this database (aka: no articles with WebBridge will appear)
      • By selecting "Peer Reviewed", you will only get scholarly journals, as they will all go through a review process.
    • To undo that action, simply click the little "x" button that will appear next to that action under "Applied filters" (which is not shown in this screenshot because I had not applied any filters yet)
  • Change your search terms
  • Find Full-Text of the article (more on that below)
  • Click into the resource's record to find more information



Reading a Detailed Record

If you click on an item to see more information, you'll get a page that looks like this:

ProQuest detailed record screenshot

In this view, you can find your basic citation information (title, author, journal, publisher, publication date, page numbers) right up at the top of your page. ProQuest will default to show you the full text of your article, but to see more information (like subject headings and the document URL), simply click on the Abstract/Details tab.

In this view you'll see all kinds of information about your resource:

  • Abstract: A short summary of what the article is about.
  • Subject terms: words that describe what the article is about. These are all links, so if you click on one of the terms, the database will automatically create a search for that term as a subject term and return all the other items that have that same subject term.
  • Location: be careful using this - this displays the location of the subject of the article, not the publisher's location (which is a bit further down the page)
  • Title
  • Author: who wrote the article/book. You can click on this name and see all the other articles written by this person (that are in this database).
  • Publication title, Volume, Issue, Pages, Number of pages, etc. etc.: your citation information is replicated and expanded here, so the information will change depending on what kind of resource you've got. In this case, we are looking at an article, so here is listed the name of the Journal, the date it was published, volume number, issue number, page numbers, total number of pages, and extra items (in this case, images)
  • Source Type: what kind of source you are looking at. Ex: article, book, magazine, newspaper, periodical, ebook, audio recording, photo
  • Other information: things like ISSN numbers, DOI links, author-supplied keywords, etc. These will change depending on the kind of information the database can pull from the source.

From this screen you can:

  • Hide Highlighting: ProQuest will automatically highlight your search terms wherever they appear in your article. To undo this action, there is a link towards the top of the page that is highlighted in yellow that says "Hide Highlighting". Click this and the yellow will disappear from your screen. Click it again (it will now say "Show highlighting") to show the highlighting.
  • Find the Full-Text: more below on Full-Text, but there will be a WebBridge, Download PDF, or Save as PDF button in the top right of your screen that you can click on
  • Email, Print, or Save the record page: see the red box on the right side of the screenshot, click these links to perform that action
  • Cite the article:
    • simply click the button on the right that says Cite, and a box will pop out in the middle of your screen.
    • Scroll through the list to find the citation style you need.
    • Click the "Change" button, then copy and paste into your document.
    • For more information on citing articles, see below.
  • Find Related Articles: Below the links to Email, Print, Save, and Cite, there is a list of related articles that have similar subject headings, or contain the same keywords. You can explore these articles by clicking on their titles.



For more help with Searching, click on the links below:

Getting Full-Text

When looking for full articles in ProQuest Central, always look for either the WebBridge or PDF Full Text buttons, which look like this:

ProQuest Find via WebBridge link screenshotOR ProQuest Full Text link screenshot

So when in doubt, look for either of these and you'll get your article. There are a few ways to get the full article you are looking for, and a few different screens you can do it from.


From the Results List

From the search results page, there will be either the WebBridge link or a Full Text link at the bottom of each item. Simply click on that full text link and you'll be able to view and download the entire article.

ProQuest results page screenshot - getting full text


From the Detailed Record

You can also find the full text of an article from the full detailed record. From the results page, if you click on the title of the resource you want to look at, there will be a link in the top right of the screen for full text, and a number of tabs in the middle of the screen. One of three options will be there:

1. There will be two Full Text tabs - one for HTML text and one for a PDF of the article. The button on the right will say "Download PDF":

ProQuest Full Text from record screenshot


2. There will be one Full Text tab that is HTML only. The button on the right will say "Save as PDF":

ProQuest HTML Full Text screenshot

3. There will NOT be a tab that says Full Text (only one for Abstract/Details). There will be a link on the right that says "Check for Full Text via WebBridge":

ProQuest WebBridge in Record screenshot



Using WebBridge

WebBridge is an application we use here in Geisel Library when articles are not available in full text in the database you searched. This means we either have access to said article in another database, we have it in print in the library, or we don't have access to it at all and you'll have to use Interlibrary Loan to get it.

When you click on the WebBridge link, one of three things will be displayed.

  1. a list of databases where the article can be found in full,
  2. instructions on how to find the print text in the library, or
  3. a link to Interlibrary Loan if we have no access to this article online or in print.
If Geisel Library has the article in full in another database

Your screen will look like this:

WebBridge Other Databases Available Screenshot

To see the full text of this article, simply click on the link to one of the databases shown, and you will automatically be taken to the article in full in that database.

If Geisel Library has the article in print

Your screen will look like this:

WebBridge journal in print screenshot

Click on the "Check here for Location" link provided, and you'll be brought to the library catalog, where you can see where in the building the title you're looking for lives, and what volumes (if it's a journal article) we own. That page will look like this:

Library Catalog record screenshot


You will have to come into the library itself to retrieve these items. If you can't find what you're looking for, feel free to ask someone at the Reference or Periodicals Desk for help. We're happy to assist!

If Geisel Library does not have access at all

Fear not! You can still get said article! Your screen will look like this:

WebBridge InterLibrary Loan screenshot

If this is your screen, simply click on the "Geisel Library Interlibrary Loan (ILL)" link. You will be redirected automatically to a login page for ILL, which will look like this:

ILL Login

Type in your SAC Username (the first half of your email address, before the @), and then your password is your student ID number (including the beginning letter, probably an S). Once you login, WebBridge will fill in all the information you need about the article, so you will be shown a screen that looks like this:

ILL Request screenshotSimply click the "Submit Request" button at the bottom of the screen (you may have to scroll down), and you're all set! You should receive an email from our Interlibrary Loan Office that explains where you can retrieve your article when it is available. If you have any other questions about Interlibrary Loan, feel free to look through our ILL page, or you can contact the ILL Office directly.


Citing a Resource

When you are looking at the entire record of a resource, off on the right side, there is a link you can click that says "Cite" (with the Email, Print, and Save links). Once you click that button, a box will pop up in the middle of your screen, and will look like this:

ProQuest Citations


The box above will appear at the top of the record. It will default to APA 6th edition, so if you want to cite your source in a different style, click on that dropdown menu and scroll through the list to find the citation style you need. You MUST then click the teal "Change" button in order for your choice to actually be reflected in the text below!! From there, you can copy and paste this citation into your document.

NOTE: Double check the citation to make sure the information and formatting is correct!!! Our databases pull information automatically from places it thinks the information should be and may not be able to format it correctly. Always always check the citation given to you by the database against the regulations given in the respective handbook for your citation style.

If you have any questions about citing sources, you can check out our Research Guide on the topic.

Saving Articles for Later

Making a temporary list:

  1. Run your search as normal
  2. Click on the checkbox from your results page next to the articles you'd like to save for later
  3. Alternatively: when you're looking at the details of the article, click on the "Add to Selected items" box on the right of your screen (below the Cite, Save, Print, and Email links)
  4. Click on the folder icon in the top-most menu (there will be a number in a dark circle next to it)
  5. A list of the articles you have selected will appear. You can cite, print, save, or email these en masse from this screen.

ProQuest Select Items screenshot

NOTE: Without signing into a "My Research" account, this list will disappear once you leave ProQuest Central! This temporary list is helpful when you are sitting down and doing research and don't want to forget to look at an article later, or if you have collected your research all at once and want to make sure you have records of the information for later without having to make an account.


Saving your articles forever using the My Research account

1. Create a My Research Account. This process is totally free.
  • Up in the top right corner, click on the person icon, then on "Sign into My Research" (do this even if you don't have an account yet)

ProQuest sign in icon screenshot

  • On the next page, click on "Create a My Research Account" to the right of the sign in information
  • You will get a pop up image that will ask you for some basic information, that looks like this:

ProQuest My Research account creation screenshot

  • A confirmation email will be sent to you to verify your email address.
  • Congratulations! You now have a My Research account!


2. Save articles to your folders
  • Folders can be made as you go! You don't have to create them before you want to put articles in them.
  • Search like you would normally.
  • Select the articles you'd like to save for later (as you did above by checking the "select item" box in the results page or the detailed page)
  • From either the results or the details page, click on the "Save" button:

ProQuest Save items screenshot

  • Then click on "Save to My Research"
  • Another menu will appear where you can select which folder you'd like to save your document(s) to:

ProQuest Save to My Research folder selection screenshot

  • You can either choose a folder that's already made, or you can make a new one from this screen.
  • Tada! You've saved items to your folders!


3. See your beautiful saved articles
  • Click on the person icon again
  • The dropdown menu will look different now:

ProQuest My Research menu screenshot

  • Click on "Saved Documents"
  • You can view all the documents you have saved, or select a particular folder by clicking on the dropdown menu under "Folder: All Documents". Your screen should look like this:

ProQuest saved documents screenshot

  • You can cite, print, save, or email these en masse from this screen.
  • Woohoo! You can return to these lists at any time and look through these articles again.


For more information on My Research and what you can do with it, go to ProQuest's research guide:

More Help from ProQuest

Not finding what you need here? Click on the links below for more information, including videos and other helpful guides.