Biotechnology: Finding journal articles

Provides information and selected resources relevant to biotechnology

Finding journal articles

Some individual journal articles may be found using SEARCH, but for a thorough search for articles on your specific topic, perform your search in an appropriate Biotechnology database. These databases are designed to provide thorough, quality coverage in specific subject areas.

Some databases will provide links to the full text of articles, others will provide only the abstract or summary. In many cases you can link to the full text by clicking check for full text from the record. If the Library subscribes to the title you will be offered the full text.

You can access the databases, through the library database page, on or off campus, using your Authcate.

Google Scholar can also be a useful discovery tool, though caution should be used. If you use GS by linking from our database page and set the Scholar Preferences to search Monash, you can have the 'Check for full text' option to access our holdings. GS Settings can also be set so the Bibliography Manager will show links to allow import of the citations to EndNote.

See also tabs in this guide: 'Searching effectively', 'Academic sources'.

Developing a search strategy

To search databases effectively, you need to consider a 'search strategy'. The databases work best if you identify keywords and use these rather than 'natural language' sentences:

  • break your research topic up into concepts or ideas
  • think of different words (keywords) to express these concepts (synonyms, alternate spellings)
  • join the keywords using AND, OR (boolean terms)

For example:

climate change OR global warming


carbon dioxide OR CO2

For more comprehensive instruction see tab 'Searching effectively'

Finding journal articles using key Biotechnology databases

Appropriate databases for Biotechnology include:

Trial databases - let us know what you think of the trial databases  

Many databases allow direct export of records into EndNote

Key databases

Databases provide access to the contents of journal articles, conference papers, these, patents and other information sources. They form the basis of, or add greater depth to your research. Most of databases provide links to full text sources where the library holds a subscription. Content not available in full text online may be held in the library in hard copy.

Databases allow keyword searching of article titles, abstracts, and subject headings / descriptors.

Full-text journal collections

Full-text journal collections allow keyword searching of articles, abstracts, subject headings/descriptors, and the full-text of articles as well.