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Psychology subject guide

To find journal articles

Major databases for journal articles in psychology:

To further your research, try related subject databases or multidisciplinary databases:

See all psychology databases

To find books

Search the Sofia Discovery tool. See below for some tips to improve your search strategy.

If you are looking for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th ed. (DSM-5), it can be found in hard copy at the Vanier Library reference desk or in the Webster Course Reserves room, as well as ebook format.

Also: try searching the APA Books database.


To find quick, background information

We have a variety of dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, etc. related to psychology, and these can provide you with quick background information when getting started with your research.

Jump to:

General search strategy

When searching either for books / reference sources in the Sofia Discovery tool, articles in a journal database, or even for pages on the web, the following tips can help improve your searches:

- Develop a list of keywords related to your topic

- Use 'AND' to join keywords in your search:
  psychology AND addiction

- Use 'OR' to search for synonyms / related concepts simultaneously:
  counselling OR therapy

- Use quotation marks " " to search for phrases (strings of more than one word):
  "substance abuse"

- Put it all together, and use parentheses ( ) to group concepts:
  Psychology AND (addiction OR "substance abuse")

- (This will search for 'psychology and addiction' and also 'psychology and "substance abuse"')

To find scales, instruments, measurements, tests, etc.

These items can require a different search approach--use the following link for a guide with more information on finding tests and measures.

The guide covers:


See also:

Specialized resources

Writing and citing in APA style

The most commonly used citation style in psychology is the APA (American Psychological Association) style, which also includes guidelines for document formatting (i.e., margins, page headers, etc.).

The following resources can help you get your papers into proper APA form.

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