Midwest Collaborative for Library Services MeL Training Materials
Reviewed 2/2013 SR
Terminology might be a bit confusing when talking about this database. This is a DATABASE titled eLibrary. MeL stands for Michigan eLibrary, our statewide online resources. Make sure people understand the difference.
eLibrary THE DATABASE includes full-text and multimedia reference essentials. There are more than 2,000 full-text magazines, newspapers, books, and transcripts--plus thousands of maps, pictures, educator-approved websites from Homework Central, and audio/video files.
This is appropriate for better middle school readers on up through adults, but its main focus is more for high school students.
Point out to the class that the main screen has some resemblance to eLibrary Elementary (which we have had in MeL for years for younger users.)
Across the top there are tabs for Search (where we land), Topics, Publications and Reference. We will take a quick look at all of these during the class.
There are also links to other functions that we will not take time to cover in class.
In the middle of the screen is a basic search box, and below that there are boxes for types of resources. The default is to have all checked. Using the text links on the right side, show how to clear all, then how to select 2 or 3 boxes.
On the right of the basic search box there are text links for Advanced Search and Popular Searches -- we may take time to look at those at the end of this demo -- they are pretty straightforward.
Let's do a basic search. Start typing the word nascar in the box. Go slowly so the class can see that we are offered type ahead suggestions. Stop when you have finished the word nascar and just leave it alone. Now do a "clear all" and then check the boxes for newspapers, magazines, and transcripts. Do the search.
Point out that there are several suggestions for a more limited search - they are all live links, and we could use one to do a new search, but we'll just look at the results we have.
On the left side, point out that results are sorted by relevance and show that we could sort them by several other means. Click on date to resort the results list. Point out what happens to the results.
Below that is a box labeled "bring results type to top." It lists the number of each type of result. Remember that we only selected newspapers, magazines, websites, and transcripts, to the other types show zero results. Click on newspapers to bring that type of resource to the top of the results list and show them what happens.
Have the class look at the results list. For each item, there is a small icon that indicates its type -- newspaper, magazine, etc. There is basic citation information, a box to check to add it to a personal list, and the title is a live link. Click on the first title.
Now we are looking at the full text of the article. Point out the email, print, and citation tools across the top. Point out the we have a box to mark the article for a personal list. Use the drop down menu to show how the article could be translated into another language. For this class, we won't actually translate because it takes a few minutes.
Point out the "back to search results" on the top of the page and show how that works.
Now we are ready to move to another type of search in eLibrary (THE DATABASE). Click on the Topics tab across the top of the page. This brings up a browsing by subject type of page. Point out the major topics and subtopics. Everything on the page is a live link that will do a search. Click on Mathematics, give the class time to look at the topics that display. There are three types of listings on this page. Some topics are underlined, and they are live links. For some listings, you would need to click on "view results" to get to the resources. For other topics, there is a star. WE WILL TALK ABOUT THE STARS LATER - please don't use one as an example right now.
Under Math Basics, click Numbers, then Roman Numerals. Point out that this is a bread crumb trail showing how we have browsed through the topics to get to this point. Sometimes this is helpful for learning how to narrow down a topic. We have gone from the Topics Home, to Mathematics, to Math Basics, to Numbers, to Roman Numerals.
Let the class look at the results list for Roman Numerals, then open the first article. Once we are at the full text of an article, we have all the typical tools available.
We are ready to look at one last feature of eLibrary (THE DATABASE).
Click on the Publications tab at the top of the page. This shows us two important things:
1. This is where we could search for a specific title of a magazine, book, etc. We could browse through the alphabetical guide or we could type in a title.
However I want to use this page to look at the "Browse the ProQuest Essentials" link on the right side of the page (picture of a lion).
These are special topics for which ProQuest has gathered information and written background articles. These are the topics that display a 'STAR' like we saw just a few minutes ago.
We did a simple search in the beginning that was specifically designed NOT to hit one of these topics. I wanted to show a simple search with results.
However ProQuest has hundreds (maybe thousands?) of these "Essentials" searches already organized for users. The results page we will see will be very different.
So, click on the letter "D" in the alpha list. Scroll slowly down the page and give the class a chance to see the number and type of topics organized in this fashion. To show one of these Essentials, click on "Dating Violence."
Now we are looking at a very different results page. In the center is a visual and the first part of an article. On the side are links that will "jump" the user down the page to subtopics/sections that can be different depending on the topic.
Click on "more" in the center of the page to bring up the full article. Give the class a chance to get a quick look at this. Use the back button on your browser to get to the previous page. Scroll down and look at the resources that are organized for users on this page.
There are helpful links all over the page that serve as great starting points for research. This provides a wonderful overview of the topic, then users will be able to move on and do more detailed searching using the techniques we did with the basic search in the beginning.
Every time you see a gold "star" in eLibrary (THE DATABASE) you will find this type of organized over view which is called a "ProQuest Essential."