Tips for Using the Libraries of the USF System Web Site
Step 1: Go to the Libraries of the USF System web site.
The Libraries of the USF System web site provides access to a wide variety of resources and services. If you are using a computer on campus, simply go to the following URL:
If you are using a computer from off-campus, the best way to access the library web site is to use your netID to go to Blackboard. From there, click on the "Libraries of the USF System" tab, then click on "Libraries of the USF System" in the upper left corner of the page. A new window should pop up. If you perform your searches within the new window, you should be able to access any of the library resources. (Note: If you go directly to the library web site without first going to Blackboard, many of the resources will not allow access.)
Step 2: Locate an appropriate database.
The key to locating books within the USF Library system is to use the Libraries of the USF System Online Catalog listed under the "Catalogs" section of the Libraries of the USF System web site. Search requests may be limited by USF Campus. Be as specific as possible when searching for books - use a title or author search if you are looking for a particular book. Try a subject specific search when looking for books on a particular topic. Appropriate subject headings may be located by consulting with a reference librarian or by browsing the Library of Congress Subject Headings books located near the Poynter Library reference desk. Books at libraries outside of the USF Library system may be located by consulting the WorldCat database (located on the Libraries of the USF System web site in the "Catalogs" section under "Other Catalogs")
If books of interest are available at another USF Library or at libraries throughout the United States , they may be requested through the interlibrary loan (ILLiad) system. Remember to plan ahead if you want materials from outside the USF St. Petersburg Library since it can take some time to get books sent from other libraries. Interlibrary loan items are requested through the "Interlibrary loan" link located in the "Services" section of the Libraries of the USF System web site.
Locating Journal Articles:
The Libraries of the USF System subscribe to a vast number of resources that provide journal citations and/or full-text articles. Most databases are subject-specific. To locate relevant resources, go to the main library web site ( http://www.lib.usf.edu ), and under the "Electronic Resources" category, select "databases." From there, select the "by subject area" link and choose an appropriate discipline. If you are unable to pinpoint the best discipline for your topic, Academic ASAP , or the Wilson Omnifile Full text Mega Edition , are good, multidisciplinary databases that can be useful for beginning your search.
Step 3: Select the books or articles that look most relevant to your research.
Be sure to write down all of the information that you will need to locate the resource and to cite it in your research paper. Refer to the Citing and Locating Sources handout for more details on what to include in your notes. If you prefer, most databases allow you to email the citations and/or articles to your email account.
Step 4: Locate the book or the full-text of the article.
This can be accomplished in several ways:
Use the link if it is available.
For journal articles,
Use the link if it is available.
Perform a title search on the title of the journal (not the article title) in the Libraries of the USF System Online Catalog.
Use the e-journal finder located in the "Electronic Resources" section of the Libraries of the USF System web site.
Click on the "full-text" link (when available) within the database.
Step 5: Remember, if you have difficulty using one of the library resources, talk to a reference librarian.
Help is available in-person, by phone (727-553-4124) or via chat (from the Ask a Librarian link on the Libraries of the USF System web site)!