This guide is designed to help students use the America: History & Life database. The tutorial will include a description of America: History & Life, the use and purpose of the database, proposed search approaches, and information on how to obtain material indexed by the database.
America: History & Life indexes 1,700 history journals and magazines from 1964 to present. The database focuses on providing journal article citations, abstracts, selected full text articles, and book review citations. However, the database also provides citations to dissertations, media, and selected collected works.
Use and Purpose
America: History & Life is the most comprehensive U.S.-Canadian history journal article index provided by the NSU Library (for articles dealing with world history, see Historical Abstracts - link below). Some of the material indexed by America: History & Life will be available either in the Library's print collection or on another Library database. Some full text articles are found on America: History & Life. However, many of the items found on the database will require the use of another database, the print collection, or interlibrary loan services, which will be discussed at the end of this guide.
The default search screen on America: History & Life provides is the "Advanced" search screen and it provides a variety of powerful tools which can be used to more closely zero in on a topic (see the below screenshot).
There are many options and features available on the Advanced Search screen (on the left here). These features can be used to broaden or narrow a search with the use of the field search options. Searches can also be more focused by limiting the publication year(s) to be searched, or by restricting the historical time period being researched. Other features can be used to limit the search results to a particular journal, or to restrict the search results to full text or linked full text only. However, before limiting the search results to full text only, remember that many of the citations contained in "America: History & Life" are not accompanied by full text articles. (Below is a screenshot of the Advanced Search screen limiters options.)
Finding items indexed by America: History & Life that are not available on the database in full text:
Nearly any article indexed by American: History & Life can be obtained in full text through one of the following steps: