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National History Day: Discover GALILEO and Primary Sources

Using Discover GALILEO

When searching for journal articles in VSU’s databases, here are some important strategies to keep in mind.


Use Keywords


Keywords help focus your search on what you’re looking for.

Instead of this phrasing: “What role did the resistance play in World War II?"

Try:  resistance AND World War II


Boolean Operators


There are three Boolean operators – AND, OR and NOT.



Helps narrow your search.

Take the example from above: resistance  AND  World War II

 We tell the search to look for all articles that contain both of these phrases “resistance” AND “World War II”.



 Helps broaden your search. We tell the search that we will accept both possibilities in our search results.

Example: World War, 1939-1945  OR  World War II



Can help make your search more precise. If a result that is different than what you intended keeps dominating your search results, you can use NOT to remove it.



Try entering your search terms in quotations marks or parentheses. 

So instead of: World War II

Try: "World War II"

Example:  resistance AND ("World War, 1939-1945" OR "World War II")



With each result page, there is a section on the right that gives you options to limit your results. You can select limiters like: 

  • Full Text
  • Type of information source (Academic Journals, eBooks, Dissertations/Theses, etc.)
  • A specific journal
  • Subject 
  • Location
  • Publication date
  • Quotation marks can help keep your search terms together.  
  • ​ Parentheses can be useful if your career has different terms that can be used to refer to it. Putting these terms in parentheses tells the search to look for all of these terms. This strategy can help you get more relevant results. 

Discover GALILEO and Primary Sources

Discover GALILEO can be a great tool to discover primary sources on your topic. 

Tips for Searching Discover


Start Simple

  • First, you need to search for your topic. It can be helpful to start with simpler or broader terms. So if your topic is a person or an event, try searching for the name of your person or event first.  


Use Quotation Marks

  • Quotation marks are helpful when you're searching for phrases like an event or a person's name. It tells the database to keep your search terms together rather than looking at each search term individually. 

For example, searching for "World War II" in Discover GALILEO yields 2,031,996 results. 


A search for world war 2. the search term has been put in quotation marks.


Using Discover to Find Primary Sources

But with the search of "World War II", Discover GALILEO gives us some interesting primary sources to work with.


Browsing Videos in Search Results


As you scroll down, you should see videos from the Associated Press. If these videos were produced during the same time period of World War II, these would count as primary sources.  The benefit of searching Discover GALILEO for these video sources is that it also provides a citations in APA, MLA, CMS and Harvard. 


Examples of Associated Press Videos from the search World War II. Some of these results are from the time period in question and thus would be primary sources


Using Publication Date Limiter to Find Primary Sources


This same concept works for articles as well. If you look over to the left of the page, you should see the option to limit to a publication date. If you enter the date of your time period, any articles published during the period of your event would also count as primary sources. 


Publication Date Limiter is highlighted to reflect that results have been narrowed down between 1939 and 1945, if interested in this time period these could be primary sources.