Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

FSMA 310: Income Tax Planning: Finding Sources

The best place to begin your search for credible information sources is the search box on the library's home page. This simple, powerful discovery tool will help you find physical items in our library (e.g. books, DVDs, reference materials) and valuable content from scholarly journals, trade publications, popular magazines, and newspapers.

main search boxUsing the library's search box allows you to search multiple databases and thousands of journals all at once. But if for some reason you need to search just one database or one journal at a time, the links below can help you do that.

Selecting Keywords

The search terms or keywords you use to search are what determine the results you get.  Here's a good exercise to help you generate keywords:

1.  Express your topic in a topic sentence: “What is the effect of television violence on children?”

2.  Generate keyword search terms by identifying the main ideas or concepts within that topic sentence while avoiding common words likely to appear in articles about unrelated topics, (e.g. leave out words like "impact," "effect," "study," or "research.")  “What is the effect of television violence on children?” = Television,  Violence, Children

3.  Expand your search terms by brainstorming related terms or synonyms that describe your main ideas:

  • Television – media, TV
  • Violence – aggression, hostility
  • Children – toddlers, youngsters, boys, girls

Combining Search Terms

You can create complex search strategies by combining keywords using the linking words AND, OR and NOT. For example, if your search terms are mathematics and curriculum:

  • AND – Narrows and focuses the search results. The search mathematics AND curriculum will bring only results where both the terms mathematics and curriculum are present.  
  • OR – Broadens the search results. Using OR will bring results where the term mathematics is present, or results where curriculum is present, or results where both terms are present.  OR is useful if you have more than one way to refer to a concept -- Example: elementary OR primary.
  • NOT – Excludes anything where the term after the NOT is present. 

Wildcards & Truncation

You can add special symbols called "wildcards" to a search term in order to receive more results. Often times this is used if a you're not familiar with a spelling, a word has multiple spellings, or you're trying to recall specific information. Different search tools, databases, and database providers utilize different wildcard characters, but the asterisk or "star" (*) is one of the most commonly used.

Truncation allows you to search various forms of a word by finding alternate endings. The wildcard character is placed at the end of the first few letters of a search term or at the end of its root. A root is the base or most simplified form of a word.

For example, using the search terms "Indian*"  may find information containing "Indian, Indians, Indiana, Indianapolis"

Each database or database provider utilizes different wildcard characters and may have restrictions such as searching no less than 3 letters to achieve results.

Specialized Databases

Government Sources