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ENGL-202-01: Intro to Journalism

Logging into library databases from off campus

If, like most students, you are working from off campus for the rest of the spring 2020 semester, it's helpful to know how access the library's databases when you're not on the campus network.

Most databases

When you click on the link to most databases in the library website's Databases A to Z list or in any of the Library Research Guides, you'll be prompted to login using your Mount Holyoke username (not your full email address, just everything before and password.

Mount Holyoke login screen

The two main exceptions to this are the Five Colleges Library Catalog and Discover, which will allow you to open and search them without first logging in, but then there are additional steps you need to take to access any of the online (electronic) resources they contain.

The Five College Libraries Catalog

You can search the Five College Libraries Catalog from off campus without logging into it. If you find an electronic resource that you wish to open, you'll be prompted to login using your Mount Holyoke username and password when you click on the link to the resource on the catalog record's LOCATION & AVAILABILITY page. Note: Mount Holyoke users only have access to those electronic resources that have a "Mount Holyoke: Link to resource" or "Five Colleges: Link to resource." 


You can also search Discover from off campus without logging in, but that restricts you from seeing all search results. It's best to login for an optimal search experience. When you open Discover from off campus, you'll notice a message/link across the top of the screen that reads "Hello, Guest. You can see partial results here, but you must login for full access." Clicking on that link opens a page prompting you to login using your Mount Holyoke username and password.

Discover search page with link to login selected


Databases that contain only online content

Some of the library's databases are searchable collections of all online articles, books, and/or other materials.  These are often referred to as "full text" databases. After searching for information on your topic, you don't need to take a lot of additional steps to get the articles or books identified in your results, they're linked right there. Databases that fit this category and and are useful for journalism research:

You'll also find a selection of individual online news titles in the News Research Guide's U.S. page's Online newspapers - selected titles and Online news journals/popular magazines - selected titles sections, and in the Historic page's Historic Newspapers section.

Databases that allow you to limit your search results to online articles and books

Some databases don't contain online copies (full text) of the publications that they index, just searchable citations describing the articles, books, and other materials they track to help you identify those that are relevant to your topic.  Some databases are a mix of citation only and linked full text content. For the citation only results, you must take additional steps to get a copy of any articles or books you wish to read. However, many of these databases have tools that allow you to limit your search results to only online articles, books, and other materials. Examples of how this works in some commonly used databases:

ProQuest News Databases

Several of the libraries news databases (News & Newspapers, US Newsstream, Ethnic NewsWatch, Black Newspapers) are developed by a company called ProQuest and all use the same search interface. To limit your search results to only articles available online, select the "Full text" checkbox below the search boxes before running your search, or select the "Full text" checkbox in the left column of the search results screen.  


After you run a search in Discover, you'll notice that the results page has a Refine Results sidebar with a Limit To section.  Select the "Full Text Available Online" option to limit your search results to only those articles, books, and other materials that are available online. 

Discover results screen with Full Text Available Online limit option selected

Note that even after selecting "Full Text Available Online" some results will show a PDF or other link to the item, while others will still show an "MH Links Options to get item" button. If you click on any of the MH Links buttons, the MH Links window that opens should show MHC Online Options (other databases to which MHC subscribes that do have the online version of the item).

MH Links page with MHC Online Options circled

Five College Libraries Catalog

Before you begin searching in the Five College Libraries Catalog, you can limit your search to materials available to Mount Holyoke College users in an online/electronic format.  First, on the catalog home page click on the Mount Holyoke link.

Five College Libraries catalog homepage with Mount Holyoke link circled

Then click on the Advanced tab to get to the catalog's advanced search screen.

Catalog homepage with Advanced tab circled


In the Advanced search screen, use the Format menu to limit your search to materials available in an electronic format (electronic formats available include E-books, E-journals, E-Video, and E-Audio).

Five College Libraries catalog advanced search screen with Format menu open

Click on the title of any result you find to view the full catalog record, then on the record's LOCATION & AVAILABILITY link. The Mt. Holyoke Call Numbers & Availability page that opens will have a "Mount Holyoke: Link to resource" or a "Five Colleges: Link to resource."  Clicking on either link will prompt you to login using your Mount Holyoke username and password, then open the electronic resource.

MHC Accessibility Barriers Form