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COMM 502: Theoretical Approaches to Multidisciplinary Design Projects: Databases

Theoretical Approaches to Multidisciplinary Design Projects

Choosing your database

Depending upon your topic, you many need to use several databases to research for your literature review. You will have various perspectives related, such as;  business, technology, or financial, to note a few.  Remember to look for additional sources, other than communication.

You will identify the perspective from your concept map. This is your key resource to structuring your literature review.

Literature Review Definition

A 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 your readers how your research fits within a larger field of study.

Fink, Arlene. Conducting Research Literature Reviews: From the Internet to Paper. Fourth edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2014.

Communication Research Databases

Here are a few databases to begin your research:

Engineering & Computer Science


search tips

Once you have identified your topic, check to see if it is too specific, if it is, work toward a general focus. This will help you  generate a list of keywords, or concepts related to your topic


travel, tourism, e-commerce, "mobile devices", smartphones, United States,vacations, digital travel, etc....

Use AND, OR, NOT to connect your phrases/keywords

to locate both smartphones AND travel

to locate either word U.S. OR United States

to locate (the first word) vacation NOT trip

 * truncation symbol

travel*  travels, travelers, traveling, traveled

Types of resources


scholarly articles


trade publications

case studies


government reports

book chapters