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University of Utah Library Guides

LEAP Fall 2011, Prof. Ownby: Visit 3

LEAP is a year-long learning community for entering University students. It consists of two three-credit-hour courses – one fall semester, one spring semester – taken with the same professor and classmates, allowing students to build community.

What is a Database?

What exactly is a database? Think about an old phone book, one in paper. The phone book has phone numbers by an individual's name or by a business name. Once the phone book goes online, it is now considered a database of information.

Webopedia defines a database in this way: (1) Often abbreviated DB. A collection of information organized in such a way that a computer program can quickly select desired pieces of data. You can think of a database as an electronic filing system.

For example, a telephone book is analogous to a file. It contains a list of records, each of which consists of three fields: name, address, and telephone number.

Accessing National Newspapers

For Current News:

New York Times

Wall Street Journal

For Historical News

Newspaper Research

Suggested Library Subscription Databases for visit 3.

  • Access World News
  • Proquest Newspapers

There are three methods for identifying databases via the library's website. 

1. Look under the intial letter of the database name.

2. If you don't know which database will be the best to use, try the drop down box, "Select Database by Subject."

3. If you need a specific type of information (also known as format), try the drop down box, "Select Database by Type." For today, click on Newspapers and learn what we have available for you to search!

Using Help menus is most useful when exploring new databases. The most important thing you will learn by using Help is how to effectively use a database that is new to you. Let's not waste time! Get the scoop by checking out Help.

Why use newspapers?

Newspapers offer accounts of the day's events and other features. Most newspapers are typically published for a single city or town (The Wenatchee World), while papers from the largest cities (The New York Times) have a more global readership, and others target a specialized audience (Wall Street Journal).


  • Local perspectives on a story
  • Primary source for events
  • Good for local news stories too small to be published elsewhere
  • Good for tracking news stories over time


  • Large city papers may publish separate city and national editions with different content
  • Articles written with newest developments first and background information later (pyramid style)
  • Back issues of most papers, when available, are normally only on microfilm or in Web archives
  • Web versions frequently differ from print versions
  • Target audience: General public, usually in a specific city or region

TIP: Learn the value of using Database Accounts!

Databases, as well as Usearch, are developing methods to make research more effective. Each database we are using has a "My Account" or "My Research" link. Here are some of the advantages of signing up for a free account in Proquest:

  • Save documents and searches across ProQuest sessions. That means if you visit your library today, create a My Research account, and then save a few documents and some searches to your account…they’ll still be there—in your account—when you visit your library, tomorrow…or next week.
  • Create folders to save and manage documents you find relevant to your research.
  • Save and manage search alerts, publication alerts, and RSS feeds

Other databases will offer similar advantages.


Rebekah Cummings's picture
Rebekah Cummings
J Willard Marriott Library
295 South 1500 East
Faculty Center, 1705Y

Wireless Printing Available Now!

This page allows patrons to send PDFs from their wireless devices to the Marriott Library and Student Computing Labs print queues. For other file types, you can convert your file to a PDF first.

Why use a Help menu

Using Help menus are useful when exploring new databases. The most important thing you will learn by using Help is how to effectively use a database that is new to you. Let's not waste time! Get the scoop by checking out Help.

Newspaper Direct

Newspaper Direct

Did you know that you can get current issues of newspapers from all over the world for only $3 ($5 for the Sunday edition)?!

The NewspaperDirect service, at the Library Store (Level 2 Reserve Desk), provides same-day access to 1,740 newspapers from 92 countries in 44 languages. Today's newspaper titles can be printed on demand.

Marriott Library Eccles Library Quinney Law Library