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Guide for new students

Welcome to Hanken's Library! This guide is aimed for helping new students on all levels getting started using the Hanken Library services. Here you also find useful tips on how to search information in databases and how to use proper reference technique.

Choose search words

When looking for information in international databases the starting point is considering the search terms and key terminology within the field. Using international databases requires search terms in English. Text books, dictionaries, encyclopedias or thesauruses can help you find suitable terms for your searches. 

For more links to thesauruses and dictionaries in English, see the link below:

The following tutorial from Scribner Reference (2:10) presents an overview of choosing keywords and how subject terms can help your information search:

Make your searches more efficient

With the right search technique you can improve your chances of finding just the information you need. Boolean operators are often required when using scientific databases. Combine boolean operators, phrase search " " and truncation * to get better and more exact search results fast. 

The three most common boolean operators are:

  • AND
  • OR
  • NOT

Watch the tutorial below (3:04) to learn more on these very useful search techniques:

Too many or too few hits?

Sometimes your searches retrieve too many or too few hits. This table helps you trouble shoot your searches:



Check the spelling Check the spelling
Use more specific search words Use more general search words
Do not use truncation Use truncation
Delete synonyms (OR) Add synonyms (OR)
Combine search words with AND / NOT Delete search words combined with AND / NOT
Limit your search and filter according to e.g. language, type of material, publication year, country etc. Do not use any limits or filters

Is the database you are using the right one for your information need? Does it cover the field of interest?


Find a journal article from a reference

The tutorial below describes how to find a specific journal article from reference details (Hanken library, 2:31). Follow the link below to watch: