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Using A–Z databases

Databases are generally composed of collections of ejournals assembled by epublishers. They may also contain other kinds of eresources including ebooks, newspapers and streamed audio and video content, or they may be an archive of a particular newspaper or magazine. Some resources, such as PubMed, are free for anyone to use but many require a subscription to access their content. The Library subscribes to many databases on behalf of Victorian residents, and you are welcome to use these.

The A-Z databases tool lets you:

  • search for databases and eresources collections by title, publisher or broad subject or format category
  • search a single database by connecting directly to the resource site.

If you are at the Library, you can access all content on our PCs and via the Library's wi-fi without signing in.

If you're at home, you'll need to be a registered State Library member living in Victoria. You will be prompted to sign in and accept the conditions of access to use the databases.

To access A-Z databases, go to the catalogue and click on the 'A-Z databases' link above the search box.

Searching for databases

There are several ways to find a particular database, including:

  • choosing a broad subject category
  • searching for a specific publisher such as ProQuest, Gale or JSTOR
  • browsing the alphabetical list
  • limiting to a type of database such as those only available at the Library or freely accessible websites without sign in
  • doing a keyword search for a known database title or database description.

The icons next to a title give information about access to databases. These include 'freely available on the Web', 'available for registered State Library members living in Victoria' and 'only available from inside the Library building'.

Tip: Remember to clear the filters between searches by clicking on the 'clear filters' box which ensures that complete results are shown.

Searching a database

Click on a database title to go directly to that site and start searching. If you're at home, you'll be prompted to sign in.

Please note that the A-Z databases list does not include the Library's large collection of CD-ROMs which can only be used at the Library. The listing includes some links to the most frequently used sections of the CD-ROMs menu (that is, CD-ROM titles loaded for access on the Library's PC network). Check the relevant subject category including 'Newspapers – historic' and 'Family history', for example.

For more information on finding articles, see Finding articles, Finding newspaper articles and Using ejournals A-Z.