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Frederick E. Berry Library and Learning Commons

BUS 170: Introduction to Business (Jain)

Google vs Library Databases

Google and Other Search Engines Library Databases
  • Scholarly journal articles

  • Popular magazine articles

  • Newspaper articles

  • Reference book articles (e.g., directories, encyclopedias)

  • Books

  • No sponsors or ads


Google and Other Search Engines Library Databases
  • Best for personal information needs including shopping and entertainment.

  • When you have time to more carefully evaluate information found on the open web.

  • Best for college level research.

  • When you need to find credible information quickly.


Google and Other Search Engines Library Databases
  • Lack of control allows anybody to publish their opinions and ideas on the Internet.  

  • Not evaluated (for the most part).  Need to more carefully evaluate web sites for bias, accuracy, and completeness.

  • Many sites are not updated regularly and can become outdated.

  • Articles and books written by journalists or experts in a professional field.

  • All material in database is evaluated for accuracy and credibility by subject experts and publishers.

  • Reviewed and updated regularly.


Google and Other Search Engines  Library Databases
  • Most information found through a search engine is free. 

  • Library databases cannot be accessed through search engines or the open web.

  • Many web sites found through Internet search engines contain licensedproprietary information and require you to logon with a user account.  You must already be a member or pay for a subscription in order to access the material from these web sites.


Google and Other Search Engines Library Databases
  • Web site content can often change.

  • Web pages and sites may disappear for a number of reasons.  May not be able to retrieve the same content at a later time.

  • Published content from journals, magazines, newspapers and books does not change.

  • Most material remains in database for a significant length of time and can be easily retrieved again.



A database is an organized, searchable collection of electronically stored information. Library databases can contain anything available in a digital format: scholarly articles, magazine and newspaper articles, ebooks, images, video, audio, conference proceedings, and reports. 
You can search or browse the databases using keywords or other identifying information (author, title, etc.) to find results that meet your information needs.
When you access a Salem State library database or article/journal title from off-campus, you will be prompted to enter a username and password.  Your username and password are the same as those used for SSU email and Navigator. 
Scholarly (Primary, Peer-Reviewed)
For academics. Scholarly research in the field. Contains Literature Review, Methods, Charts.
Example: Journal of Food Science, New England Journal of Medicine
Popular (Secondary)
For general public.  Personalities, news, general interest articles. 
Example: People, Sports Illustrated
For industry, professionals.  Trends, products for industry. 
Example: MacWorldPublic Management


A scholarly article is basically a formal presentation of original research.
Scholarly articles have many features which distinguish them from popular or secondary sources. In evaluating whether an article is scholarly, you should look for:
  • The publication source is usually a periodical (journal). 
  • The article is highly structured, usually with an abstract, introduction, methods, results and conclusion. 
  • Specific, technical or scientific language is used.
  • Original research is being presented for the first time. 
  • The authors have their affiliations noted (university, organization...).
  • There are citations within the text and a set of references at the end
"Peer-reviewed" describes the process an article has to go through before it can be published in a specific journal. 
When a piece of research is submitted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal, a panel of researchers with a similar focus judge the research by various criteria
The article must be reporting original research that adds to the body of knowledge for the subject. The research must be reproducible, ethical and unbiased. Methods must be properly controlled and the conclusion must be reflective of the results. 
Some journals are a lot harder to get published in than others and this adds to their prestige. 


Sections of a scholarly/peer-reviewed article

The introduction leads the reader from a general subject area to a particular field of research. It establishes the context and significance of the research being conducted by summarizing current understanding and background information about the topic, stating the purpose of the work in the form of the research problem supported by a hypothesis or a set of questions, briefly explaining the methodological approach used to examine the research problem, highlighting the potential outcomes your study can reveal, and outlining the remaining structure of the paper.
  • research problem is a statement about an area of concern, a condition to be improved upon, a difficulty to be eliminated, or a troubling question that exists in scholarly literature, in theory, or in practice that points to the need for meaningful understanding and deliberate investigation. In some social science disciplines the research problem is typically posed in the form of one or more questions. A research problem does not state how to do something, offer a vague or broad proposition, or present a value question.
literature review surveys books, scholarly articles, and any other sources relevant to a particular issue, area of research, or theory, and by so doing, provides a description, summary, and critical evaluation of these works in relation to the research problem being investigated. Literature reviews are designed to provide an overview of sources you have explored while researching a particular topic and to demonstrate to the readers how the research fits within a larger field of study.
The methods section describes the rationale for the application of specific procedures or techniques used to identify, select, and analyze information applied to understanding the research problem, thereby, allowing the reader to critically evaluate a study’s overall validity and reliability. The methodology section of a research paper answers two main questions: How was the data collected or generated? And, how was it analyzed?
  • Qualitative Research implies an emphasis on the qualities of entities and on processes and meanings that are not experimentally examined or measured [if measured at all] in terms of quantity, amount, intensity, or frequency. Qualitative researchers stress the socially constructed nature of reality, the intimate relationship between the researcher and what is studied, and the situational constraints that shape inquiry. Such researchers emphasize the value-laden nature of inquiry. They seek answers to questions that stress how social experience is created and given meaning. In contrast, quantitative studies emphasize the measurement and analysis of causal relationships between variables, not processes. Qualitative forms of inquiry are considered by many social and behavioral scientists to be as much a perspective on how to approach investigating a research problem as it is a method.
  • Quantitative Research emphasize objective measurements and the statistical, mathematical, or numerical analysis of data collected through polls, questionnaires, and surveys, or by manipulating pre-existing statistical data using computational techniques. Quantitative research focuses on gathering numerical data and generalizing it across groups of people or to explain a particular phenomenon.
The results section of the research paper is where the findings of the study are based upon the methodology [or methodologies] applied to gather information. The results section should simply state the findings of the research arranged in a logical sequence without bias or interpretation.
The discussion is to interpret and describe the significance of the findings in light of what was already known about the research problem being investigated, and to explain any new understanding or fresh insights about the problem after taken the findings into consideration. The discussion will always connect to the introduction by way of the research questions or hypotheses posed and the literature reviewed, but it does not simply repeat or rearrange the introduction; the discussion should always explain how the study has moved the reader's understanding of the research problem forward.
  • The limitations of the study are those characteristics of design or methodology that impacted or influenced the interpretation of the findings from the research. They are the constraints on generalizability, applications to practice, and/or utility of findings that are the result of the ways in which the study and/or the method used to establish internal and external validity.
The conclusion is intended to help the reader understand why the research should matter to them after they have finished reading the paper. A conclusion is not merely a summary of the main topics covered or a re-statement of the research problem but a synthesis of key points and, if applicable, recommended new areas for future research. For most essays, one well-developed paragraph is sufficient for a conclusion, although in some cases, a two or three paragraph conclusion may be required.

Look up the NAICS code to see your industry at a more detailed level

NAICS code  (North American Industry Classification System)
Standard for classifying business establishments and it groups them according to similarity in the processes used to produce goods or services.  

Go to Browse Alphabetical List for a full list of library databases. 


Find journals, magazines, and newspapers by title by using our periodicals directory. The library has a wide range of journals, magazines, and newspapers in print or online through databases.

Interlibrary Loan

Can't access an article? Inter-Library Loan is a great way to get pretty much anything you want from any library in the world.
You just need to fill in an easy online form and the librarians will do the work for you.
Enter '0' in the payment field.
The item will generally get to you within a few days - books will need to be collected from the library and articles will normally be e-mailed to you as a PDF.