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Philosophy

Research Guide for Philosophy

Best Bets on Finding Articles

 Get started with these databases in your searches for scholarly research in philosophy. 

Other resources

Books & eBooks

McKillop Library has an online library catalog so you can find books, e-books, videos and articles on your topic. Below are a few resources that might help get you started.  

Catalog Search

Catalog Search - Try It Yourself

Search Tips

Whether you are searching on the library website or Google, most searches default to Keyword searches.

A Keyword search looks for words anywhere in the title, summary, content, or metadata of an item. Keyword searches are a good substitute for a subject search when you do not know the standard subject heading. Keyword may also be used as a substitute for a title or author search when you have incomplete title or author information.

  • Use this type of search technique when you are getting a feel for your topic and you are finding general information on a topic or subject.
  • For example: a keyword search for "Thomas Jefferson" will give you results for items about and written by him. If you want to find items written by Thomas Jefferson use an author search and enter "Jefferson, Thomas."
  • As you search for information on your topic you will develop your own vocabulary and terms related your topic. Keeping track of searches that worked well or create lists of synonyms of your keywords to improve your searching.

This search looks for the name of the author, editor, creator, or translator of an item.

  • Use this search when you know the name of the author, editor, creator, or translator of a item.
  • Tip: search last name, first name, for example "Jefferson, Thomas." If you don't find the author you are looking for, try a keyword search instead. Be mindful of aliases for example: Mark Twain and Samuel Clemens are the same person. Similarly with Christopher Wallace, better known as the Notorious B.I.G., Biggie Smalls, or Biggie.
  • Tip: States, institutions or museums can be listed as authors. Try searching a state, institution, or museums to see what they have published. For example: Rhode Island, Harvard University, American National Red Cross, or Boston Museum of Fine Art.
  • If you want to find items written by Thomas Jefferson use an author search and enter "Jefferson, Thomas." If you enter a name as a subject, the items you see in the search results will be about them, not necessarily written by them. A keyword search will return anything containing the name "Thomas Jefferson".

This search looks for the exact words you entered as the title of an item. If you don't know the exact title, try using a Keyword Search instead.

  • Use this when you know the exact title of a book, exhibition catalog, or journal.

A subject search is more specific than a keyword search. Subject headings are a predetermined list of possible terms, which reflect the content of the item. Most academic libraries use Library of Congress Subject Headings. Subject headings are not always intuitive.

  • Use this type of search when you want to find information which reflects the about-ness of a topic.
  • If you want to find items written by Thomas Jefferson use an author search and enter "Jefferson, Thomas." If you enter a name as a subject, the items you see in the search results will be about them, not necessarily written by them. A keyword search will return anything containing the name "Thomas Jefferson".

*Subject searching is found on advanced search page