Trocaire College Libraries

What is the Gale Database Guide?

This guide will show you how to use Gale to find journal articles for your assignments. Many of the things you learn from this guide can be used in our other library databases.

You will be given search strategies, and other helpful hints, for searching Gale before starting your own searching.

Why databases?

The best way to find journal articles for your assignments is to use the Library's databases.

While just Googling is quicker, you cannot always verify the accuracy of a website...or worse, you may be asked to pay $$ for limited use of an article you find online that you could be getting free from the library!

Finding Gale Cengage Learning

To find Gale on our website, click on the toolbar and select Research, from the drop-down menu select Resources and then click on the Library Resources and Databases.

Here you will find a listing of the databases A-Z and also Library Resources by Subject. Click on the A-Z listing. You can scroll down the screen until you reach Gale.

Click here to access Gale to start your search journey.

If you are off-campus, you will need to login with your Trocaire network ID and password.

What is Gale?

Gale is a collection of databases on a variety of topics.

Some of the databases in the library's subscription to Gale include:
  • Academic OneFile - covers a variety of topics
  • Culinary Arts - articles about nutrition, the restaurant industry and recipes
  • Hospitality and Tourism - cultural and economic aspects of the travel and tourism industry
  • New York State Newspapers - past issues of The New York Times and Buffalo News among others
  • Nursing and Allied Health - articles on patient care and administration
  • Opposing Viewpoints - Pro/Con issues and current events
  • Religion and Philosophy - articles on a wide array of topics and religions
  • US History - historical and critical articles about events in US History

You can click directly on a database to search it individually.

To search multiple databases, click on the box next to the database's title.

To search all the databases, click on the box at the top of the database list.

Searching Gale

Tips to improve your search:

  • Peer Reviewed Journals - limits results to scholarly journal articles
  • By publication date(s) - limits the date range of your search
  • Select Document Type - limit to a certain type of document such as case studies or market overviews

It is recommended to keep Full Text unchecked because your search will show all articles available for your topic.

If the article is not in full text, it may be available in other Trocaire databases or through Interlibrary Loan.


Keywords are the words you enter into a database or search engine to find information on a topic. You only want to use the main points of the topic as your keywords.

Keywords are critical for effective database searching. They...

  • help you focus on a topic.
  • help you focus your research.
  • eliminate extraneous articles.
  • are better for Internet searching too.

Keyword Tips

Now some quick search tips when using Gale or our other databases:

  • Use academic or professional language when you are conducting research in order to find the most scholarly materials on your topic.
  • Avoid unnecessary words like effect, affect, study, research or journal when searching library databases.
  • Put quotation marks around your words to search as an exact phrase
    • climate change
  • Use an asterisk to search for words with similar endings.
    • teen* would find teen, teens, teenage, teenager, teenaged.
  • Use a question mark or hashtag symbol to search for similarly spelled words at the same time
    • woman and women (wom#n, wom?n).
    • Databases tend to use the question mark; search engines the hashtag symbol.

Search Tips

  • Use AND to combine your main keywords together. This happens automatically in search engines.
    • “Lake Erie” AND “climate change”.
  • Use OR in databases and web searching to search for two words that can be used interchangeably.
    • neonate OR infant OR newborn
  • Use NOT to eliminate a word or topic from your search. Many search engines use a minus sign (-) to eliminate words.
    • vaccines NOT autism

Limiting your results

Once you begin searching in Gale, you may retrieve 1,000s of articles. There are ways to lower your search results to find articles that better fit your needs.

  • Add additional keywords to your search
  • Use the date slider to see only recently published articles
  • Limit by Subjects to find articles directly related to your topic

Abstract or Article? What is a Scholarly Article?

Once you find an interesting title, click on it to read the abstract.

An abstract is a summary of the journal article. Reading it can help you decide if the article works for your research project.

A journal article contains an abstract, plus the full article and references at the end. There are also often datasets, charts and graphs within the article. Most instructors want you to find scholarly articles for your research. Click here to find out more about what a scholarly article is.

Your instructors want full text journal articles not abstracts.

Full Text

All articles in full text in Gale have annotation Full-text: Article above the title. Articles in full text look like a webpage.

Two features available to you:
    • a translator from English to another language
    • text-to-speech reading of the article

Some articles also have a PDF version as well which looks like a scan of the original article in the printed journal.

There are several tools to help you do more with your article.

The most commonly used tools are:

  • Citation Tools (APA, MLA)
  • Print
  • Email
  • Get links
  • Highlights & Notes

If you choose to cite using Gale, make sure to double check your citation against a trusted resource like our Citation Help page to make sure it is properly formatted.

Topic Finder

Use Topic Finder, located on the right-hand side of the search result page, if you want to explore your search visually.

You have a choice between a tile or wheel based visualization. As you click through the topics, Gale Cengage Learning will add related articles to the right of the image.

360 link

If you see the 360 link, there is only an abstract available for the article in our Gale database.

If you click on the link, it will search all of our other databases for the article. If the article is available in full text in another Trocaire database, you will be redirected to it.

Also, if the article is available full-text on the Internet, the 360 link will list the places you can get the article.

Interlibrary loan

You may also be redirected to a page advising you the article is not available in our databases.

Click on Request an Interlibrary Loan to send us a request to get the article from another college.

Within the ILL Request Form:
  • Enter your contact information
  • Enter the year the article was published
  • Scroll down and press Submit

Most articles will be delivered to your Trocaire College email in 2 - 72 hours. If it will take longer than that, we will contact you

Any questions, ask a librarian!

Revised & Updated June 2020