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EXPH 3201: Research and Design

Databases for Scholarly Articles: Finding primary research

Databases: Start Here!

Articles can be found in the library's databases. Library databases are searchable, contain citation information (author, title, publisher, abstract, date published, etc.) and often contain full-text articles. Databases can be multi-disciplinary covering many subjects or they can be subject-specific focusing on a specific area of study. 

SearchONU: Always a good place to start out and test your topic. SearchONU is the library's database that searches most of the other databases, e-journals, e-books, the POLAR catalog, as well as the OhioLINK catalog.

Additional general and subject-specific databases:

For topics that are outside the general scope of exercise physiology, or include elements that might be part of a different discipline's subject-specific databases, make sure to check out the "Databases -- Alphabetical & Subject Listings" link below.

Examples: For food-related topics, look in the alphabetical listing for the "Food Science Source" database. For those related to illegal drugs or other criminal activity, database subject areas for "Criminal Justice & Law," "Psychology," and "Sociology" might be helpful.

Reviews and Primary Literature: What are they?

Reviews: A review is important because it:

  • Explains the background of research on a topic.
  • Demonstrates why a topic is significant to a subject area.
  • Helps focus your own research questions or problems
  • Discovers relationships between research studies/ideas.
  • Suggests unexplored ideas or populations
  • Identifies major themes, concepts, and researchers on a topic.
  • Tests assumptions; may help counter preconceived ideas and remove unconscious bias.
  • Identifies critical gaps, points of disagreement, or potentially flawed methodology or theoretical approaches.
  • Indicates potential directions for future research.

Modified from: Source

Primary literature: In the sciences, the primary literature presents the immediate results of research activities.  It often includes analysis of data collected in the field or laboratory.  Primary literature presents original research and/or new scientific discoveries.  

  • Examples of Primary Literature in the Sciences: Original research published as articles in peer-reviewed journals, dissertations, technical reports, and conference proceedings. 
  • Identifying Primary Literature in the Sciences: When looking at a journal article to determine whether or not is it primary literature, look for the following common components of a primary research article: Abstract, introduction, methods or materials and methods, results, discussion, conclusions, and references.

Modified from: Source

Review Articles: Where to find them?

For more information: 

Specific Relevant Journal Titles

Journal Finder



Use the Journal Finder to search for content within specific journal titles. Enter a title in the box above, or click on one the titles listed below to begin your title-specific search.

Accessing Full Text Using PubMed