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This is a general research guide for the undergraduate and graduate courses in OSU's Engineering programs. You'll find suggestions for locating books, articles, topical overviews, research tools, and factual information.

Start Broadly - 1Search

Find books, online scholarly articles or newspaper articles that OSU subscribes to.  If you need to find specific items, such as books by a particular author, use the advanced search option for more precise searching. Access 1Search from the library's home page.

1Search search bar showing two links: Databases A through Z and eJournals A through Z


Search Tips

Combine terms using "AND" or "OR"

AND narrows your search (fewer results);
OR broadens your search (more results) - use between synonyms 

For more successful searches:

  • Generate synonyms for keywords before you begin searching. Having a list of synonyms will help you if any of your keywords do not retrieve many results.
  • Look at the subject headings that are used in the database records you've retrieved. These subject headings may lead you to keywords that you had not considered.

Searching Google Scholar

Google Scholar Search

With Google Scholar you can search broadly (across several disciplines) with one search.  You can use Google Scholar to find peer-reviewed articles, but you will also find pre-print copies of articles, conference papers, white papers, patents, legal opinions and more.

  1. Before you start -- go to Scholar Preferences to enter and select Oregon State University in the Library Links field.
  2. Enter your keywords in the search box.
  3. Browse results, making sure to use the library's subscriptions to get access to the text of the articles where you can.

How to use Google Scholar (without Paying for the Articles)

Learn Google search operators

Recommended Databases for Engineering

To identify articles on engineering topics, start with these three databases.

Finding the full text of an article

 Look for the 360 link to full text button to open the full article.

Options for getting to the PDF will open in a new window. Sometimes the link will take you to the journal, not the individual article. Use the citation information for the article to get to the right year, volume and issue of the journal.

If the library doesn't have it, request the article for free from Interlibrary Loan: On average, articles arrive digitally in 13 hours.