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Database Help at the Cypress College Library

Guide to using databases at the Cypress College Library

Start using Academic OneFile (Gale)

Steps to using Academic OneFile (Gale)

Step 1: Logging in & browsing topics. 

Academic OneFile (Gale) can be found on the library's Database page. It is one of our most popular databases, because it covers a wide range of discipline areas and it's great for topic exploration. When the page loads, you can type your topic keyword in the search box or click on "Browse Topics" to get topic ideas. You can also scroll down to the "Browse By Discipline" section and click your area of interest to browse topics in that that subject. 

Gale Academic OneFile homepage with search box, "browse topics", and "browse by discipline" circled in red

Clicking on one of the topics in the "Browse by Discipline" area, you will be directed to a page with several topics in that area.

Gale Academic OneFile Topic Browsing, page with several topics listed

Clicking on one of these topics will lead you to a page with several different resources in that topic area. Go to Step 3: Refining the Search for more help on navigating this results page. 

Gale Academic OneFile topic page on "Genes" within the Biology section

Step 2: Searching & using keywords. 

Enter your keyword(s) into the search box. Keywords are simple short phrases or words to describe your topic. For example, if your research question is "What makes college students successful?" your keyword might be "college student success".

Gale Academic OneFile Search Box searing "college student success"

Starting with general/broad keywords will give you a good overview of the results available and will load a page with  but it is likely that you will get too many results. Go to Step 3: Refining the Search for more help on navigating this results page. 

Gale Academic OneFile search results for college student success

Step 3: Refining the search. 

There are a few ways to refine a search. This can be done by using the FILTER YOUR RESULTS toolbar. You can filter your results by defining dates, subjects, document type, and more. 

Filter Your Results toolbar in Academic OneFile (Gale)

Academic OneFIle (Gale) Publication Date filter demonstrationDate

Generally, your professors would like you to use articles published within the past 5-10 years. Anything older than that can be considered outdated. A quick way to narrow your results down is to use refine the date range to hide results that are too outdated.  There will be times, such as researching historical information, when you will want to see articles regardless of the date range. Check with your professor if you are unsure. 



Academic OneFIle (Gale) Publication Subjects filter demonstrationSubjects

Click on subjects to browse the subject terms assigned to the articles in your results list. Subject terms are keywords that define the main subjects of the article. The database has a defined list of subject terms, so it's most efficient to model your keywords after the subject terms that the database is already using. Click on these subject terms to narrow down your results, but also browse them to give you ideas on how to improve your search. The number next to each term indicates the number of articles using that subject term. 






Academic OneFIle (Gale) Publication Document Type filter demonstrationDocument Type

Did your professor specify to use a particular type of article? Are you required to use academic journal articles (also known as, peer-reviewed articles), magazines, or newspapers? If you are looking for a particular type of article, you can use this feature to select only the type of article you are looking for.  You can also select the document type on the top toolbar, which organizes your results by academic journals, magazines, books, news, videos, and so on. 

Academic OneFIle (Gale) Publication Document tabs filter demonstration

Step 4: Saving articles & additional tools

Saving articles

Once you see a result you are interested in, you can access it by clicking on the title of the article. This will lead you to the full-text of the article, as well as a number of helpful tools to access and save the article, as well as additional tools for exploration.  Articles can be saved by downloading, printing, emailing, and saving to your desktop or cloud-based storage (Google Drive, OneNote). 

Academic OneFile (Gale) Article page with saving, accessing, and browsing tools highlighted

Additional tools

  • Cite is a great tool to help you get started on the citation of your article. Keep in mind, these are machine generated citations, so it is recommended to review the citation carefully before using it. 
  • Audiovisual options are available to translate the article in different languages, change font size, modify display options, and listen to the article.
  • The Explore box features a More Like This section to find additional articles like the one you selected. Keep in mind, sometimes these articles might be outdated, so always check the date. 
  • The Explore box features a Related Subjects section to help you explore topics related to the subjects of your chosen article.