Skip to Main Content
university logo

University Library

Child & Family Studies

Use this to help you with research for Child & Family Studies courses.

What Researchers Do:

TOPIC – Define the research question/statement

SOURCES – Identify the information need. Do you need background info? A research article? A literature review article? etc. What databases would include this type of information on your topic?

KEYWORDS – Select the words you will be using to find information effectively and efficiently (Use a variety of words to describe your topic/concepts. Find subject headings that relate to your topic/concept).

EVALUATION – Evaluate information critically. Is the info relevant, reliable, current, appropriate?

USE--Organize, synthesize and communicate information to make your point/argument.

CITE--Ethically and legally access and use info by avoiding plagiarism and citing all your sources.


Database Search

Terms and Connectors

There are several databases that you can use to find articles. Remember that databases will only include journals that are within that particular subject area. For instance, if you want the sociological perspective on childhood, then you would want to use Sociological AbstractsIf you wanted the psychological perspective, then you would want to use APA PsycInfo.


for when you need all terms in a search string included in the articles you retrieve


for when you have more than one way to say the same thing

if either of the terms shows up in articles retrieved it will be a useful article

* !

wild-cards for getting a root word and all of it's endings

for example: communicat* will search for communication, communicating, communicates, communicated, communicator, etc.

What is Boolean searching?

John F. Kennedy Memorial Library
California State University, Los Angeles
5151 State University Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90032-8300