Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

SPA 312: Latinx Cutures


By the end of today's presentation, you should be able to:

1. Find academic sources for your topic in Library One Search using advanced search.

2. Discern whether an citation is a book, book chapter, or an article.

3. Use subject vocabulary to inform/refine your search.

4. Use source types and other categories (facets) to limit your search.

5. Obtain a copy of the article or book/book chapter either in full text, in the library, or through interlibrary loan services ( ILL).

6. Identify the database in which your citation is indexed.

7. Cite your source in MLA format.

Break your topic into keywords. For example, "I'm looking into the effects of violence on people under dictatorship."

  • Start broad with nouns: violence, dictatorship. We can get more specific as we look at our results.
  • Enter different concepts into different boxes.
    • This helps us easily add or discard concepts as we search.

Search box 1: violence AND search box 2: dictatorship. Results, 4,804.


Looking at my results, I can see that the words "violence" and "dictatorship" are subject terms. Look what happens to my results when I change the drop-down box to SU Subject Terms

  • We go from 4,804 results (above) to 764 results (below).

Search box 1: violence; search box 2: dictatorship. Both limited to subject terms in dropdown box. Results lower: 764


Perhaps I want to look for articles about the effects on women particularly. I can add a third term, "women." I get 55 results (below). That doesn't mean that these are the only articles on this topic.

  • I could change "dictatorship" and/or "violence" back to the default keyword ("select a field.")
  • Or, I could take out the word "violence" and search just "dictatorship" and "women" and see what I get.

Box 1: violence as subject term. AND box 2: dictatorship as subject terms. AND box 3: women. Results=56

first search box dictatorship as SUBJECT AND second search box women as SUBJECT. Search results 1-20 of 417 (417 is highlighted)



Or, I could add country names to my original search.

Box 1: violence as subject term. AND box 2 dictatorship as Subject term AND box 3 Chile OR Argentina. Results=160


The point I am illustrating is to try different combinations of terms to get different results.






Box 1 dictatorship AND psychol* OR trauma


Box 1 dictator* AND box 2 psychol* OR trauma as subject AND box 3 women as subject. Results 122


Sometimes you can get too narrow for a search. That doesn't mean that there is nothing on this topic, it is just that one of these terms may not be a subject term or is not used at all. That is why we want to keep track of what terms we search and how.

How could we change this search to get more results? Replace "dictatorship" with "Chile," for example, and see what happens.


Box 1 Dictatorship AND Box 2 psychol* OR trauma and box 3 women. All are subject terms. Only 13. Too narrow.

Patterns to try:




Box 1 Ariel Dorfman as SUBJECT; AND box 2 dictatorship (as keyword)

Box 1 Machuca (film) as subject term


Limit To options: Online Access & In Library; Onli


Online Access & In Library= Everything the library has online and


Online Access=Excludes all print & physical resources

(DVDs, print scores, etc.)

Peer Reviewed=Limits to scholarly articles.

Be aware that this excludes book chapters/essays and books.

Source Types:

  • "Academic Journals" limits to scholarly journals.
  • "Ebooks" and "books" will limit to ebooks with chapters and essays on your topic. These books may be scholarly as well. In the humanities, books are important sources for scholarly articles as well.
    • If we don't have ebook access, we can get the chapter/essay for you through Interlibrary Loan.

Language: For articles in Spanish, select Spanish.


Source Types: Academic journals, Magazines, News, Reviews, Books, Show more

Language. English. Spanish (selected). Spanish; casillian. Portuguese. French. German.

Click the "cite" button in the righthand menu. A center box appears, where you can scroll and choose your citation format. Choose MLA. You can copy and paste the citation.

Always check your citation against the style guide. Capitalization might be wrong, or extra information or characters may be inserted. The database is plugging in data from the record according to an algorithm. It is up to you to know what you are citing!

Cite button in righthand menu is highlighted. Center screen shows citations formats for you to select. Choose MLA.