Skip to main content
SSU ship logo and 'Salem State University' text
Frederick E. Berry Library and Learning Commons

Nixon: ENL330 Short Story Library Research

Review Your Search Strategy

  • Work with key words you worked out in the Search Strategy worksheet. 
  • Examples:
    • "The Rocking Horse Winner" and criticism 
    • "The Rocking Horse Winner" and themes
    • "The Rocking Horse Winner" and materialism
  • Tips:
    • Put "quotation marks" around the titles of the short stories. This ensures that the title will be searched as a phrase.
    • Go to the "Advanced Search" features in the databases you choose.
    • This will allow you to combine terms. 
    • You will have the title of your story and a craft/element of fiction like "point of view," "form," etc.
    • In some instances, you might want to define the theme. "Materialism," one of the themes of "The Rocking Horse Winner" is a keyword in the example above. 

Sneak Preview: Finding Secondary Sources for DH Lawrence's short story "The Rocking Horse Winner" in the Academic Premier Database

  • On the Berry Library home page (, scroll down to "Databases... browse alphabetical list."
  • Find "Academic Search Premier" in the drop down menu.
  • Click "Go."

  • Before I can enter "Academic Search Premier," I must enter my Salem State username and password in the Proxy Server.
  • This establishes that I am a member of the Salem State community and am therefore entitled to access this database.
  • Once I enter this information, the database will open.


  • When Academic Search Premier opens, click "Advanced Search." 



  • My first search:

  • First search term entered in the top search box.
  • Second search term entered in the box below it.
  • "Quotation marks" around the title of the story so that it will search as a phrase.
  • Notice how when I begin typing, Academic Search Premier suggests ways to modify my search:


The Big Reveal: Initital Search Results

Let's Examine the First Citation in the Results List

  • All of our results have a PDF icon.
  • This means that the full text accompanies the citation in the database.
  • The first article looks interesting:


  • I click on the PDF icon in the left side of the page to view the article:

  • I check out the useful "Tools" on the right side of the original results screen.
    • There are options for "Cite," "Print," and "Save." 
    • "Save" will save the citation to your computer.
    • .

Opening the PDF, Saving to Your Computer

  • The next steps are:
    • Open the PDF
    • Download to your computer
    • Save as a file