Searching PsycINFO (with PsycARTICLES) Database Using the Thesaurus
Hi! This is Bobbie. I will be showing you how to use the thesaurus in the PsycINFO (with PsycARTICLES) database. PsycINFO (with PsycARTICLES) covers the field of psychology and contains abstracts from articles, books, book chapters, and more. Some databases like PsycINFO include an online thesaurus. The thesaurus contains a carefully selected list of psychology-related words and phrases assigned to PsycINFO records to organize them by subject. While you can search the PsycINFO database using keywords, you will get more precise search results if you use the thesaurus terms. Not all databases will have an online thesaurus. For example, PsycINFO includes a tab at the top of the screen for the thesaurus. When we click on the tab, we are taken to this screen where we can enter our search term. For example, let's check and see if we can find information or see if the term "appetite disorders" is used. After typing in your term, if you will click on "Browse," you will see that we will get a list of results for this particular term and we find that for some reason PsycINFO has decided not to use the term "Appetite Disorders" but prefers to use this term, "Eating Disorders." Before we click on this, let's look at some of the other information here in the thesaurus. If you notice, these terms here that have the little boxes beside them are terms that are used. If you know at this point in time that you would want to use some of these terms, you can put a check in the box and then it will search the term automatically for you. PsycINFO provides a lot of information about the terms that are listed in the thesaurus so if we click on "Eating Disorders," you'll notice here that "Eating Habits" - they still do not use this particular term but prefer this term, "Eating Behavior." Again, if we click here on "Eating Disorders," we will find additional information about this particular term. In PsycINFO, they often times will tell you when they first introduced the term - in this case, it was in 1997. If you read down through this "History Note," you will find additional information about how this term has been used through the years. If you prefer after you have looked through this information and you decide that "Eating Disorders" is the term that you want to use, you can put a little checkmark here in the box, click here on "Add," and the system will bring you back to this screen and you'll notice here we have "DE" - which stands for "Descriptors" - and we have our term, "Eating Disorders." If we click here on "Search," the system will automatically perform the search for us. It will let us know how many records it has identified in our search and it will then list the articles that have terms related to this particular term of "Eating Disorders." At this point in time, we can add in another term or, if we want to, we can go back and click on the "Thesaurus" and go through and select our terms that way. If you have questions about using the databases, you can contact a librarian at zsr.wfu.edu/ask.