Search Tips

Prepare your search

  • Narrow down and define the topic of the work precisely
  • Create a word list: Search for synonyms and related terms, use singular or plural, check abbreviations
  • Clarify unclear terms with the help of (online) dictionaries
  • Scheduling: How much time do I have for literature research and editing? Do I have enough time to use interlibrary loan/document delivery or do I have to limit my search to locally available sources? How extensive should the literature search be?
  • Is the search for books/e-books sufficient or are articles from journals/e-journals also required?
  • Are there free scientific electronic resources on my topic? (Open Access)
  • The selection of relevant catalogs / databases and, if necessary, printed bibliographies depends on the subject and scope of the work.

Where to search?

Getting started: Katalog+ of our University Library

In Katalog+ you can search the University Library's extensive media collection. You will find books and journals that are available in print and/or as electronic full text. In addition, the Katalog+ is enriched with a large number of citable sources beyond the library's media holdings. This enables you to carry out a comprehensive search for articles and papers in selected journals and conferences.

The Katalog+ Help provides search tips to get to know the most important functions of the Catalog+.

Additional: Literature search in several sources at once in DigiBib

With the DigiBib KL or DigiBib LD metasearch, you can simultaneously search library catalogs and databases from all over the world. Database profiles can be selected specifically. Use the button “How do I get it?” to check the availability of the found media. If required, you can then conveniently place an interlibrary loan request.

Thematic Search: DBIS

In the Database Information System (DBIS) you will find a selection of licensed and free databases listed by subject area. Databases offer you a variety of specific search options.

Search methods

Various search options are available to you depending on the library catalog or database.

Search with keywords/subject heading

A keyword, also called subject heading, is a standardized term that summarizes the content of a publication. It does not have to appear in the title of a text. This will help you to find other interesting publications for your work.


Linking search terms

Several words can be linked with logical terms (Boolean operators).


Using wildcards

Wildcards replace single or multiple characters or cause a word stem search:

* / ? / $

  • Educat* finds educate, educated, education, educational or educator
  • Ph*ic finds physiologic, phonetic, and phlegmatic.
  • Wom?n finds woman and women
  • colo$r finds color and colour
Search for word phrases

If you want to search for a specific word sequence (phrase), these terms must be enclosed in quotation marks.

  • „climate change“

Found too little literature?

  • Did you use all important search terms / keywords correctly?
  • Have you searched in all relevant information sources?
  • Using the „snowball system“: Which titles are mentioned in the bibliographies of the books and articles found?

Found too much literature?

  • Is the author well-known? Has the author published several times on this topic?
  • Which titles are dispensable in terms of content?
  • Narrow down the topic again
  • Consider qualitative factors

Central Information

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Central Information

Library Landau
Building D

Phone: +49 6341  280 - 31650



Monday - Friday
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