How to use resources: Overview


This guide is designed to help you use the Library resources such as the catalogue and Library Search to find academic sources like books, journal articles and other materials during your time at Brunel University London. It includes advice on how and where to search for appropriate materials for your research projects and assignments.

Navigate through the tabs to access relevant information:

Or, for further support and more detailed subject advice, contact your Academic Liaison Librarian (ALL).

If you are looking for more information on borrowing books and Library Basics, consult our Using the Library guide. 

Search Library resources

Our discovery tool, Library Search, will look for books, journal articles and more in one quick easy search - a great place to start your research. The results list also includes full-text links to subscribed content, like articles and textbooks. 

To search Library 'Search all' you can use keywords relevant to your topic, author names or the title of the source. 


For a more comprehensive search, individual databases offer greater functionality and give full access to a tailored suite of resources for your subject. To find out the database available in your subject, look for your programme in our Subject Guides, or you can view and access all our Databases alphabetically on the Databases A-Z webpage.

Search for books only (does not include all electronic books):

Search for full-text articles:

Search or browse for journals/periodicals:

Journal title begins with

Browse periodicals by subject

Browse periodical titles

0-9 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Other

Search tips

Here are some search tips to get you started when using the Library Search discovery layer:

Tip 1: Narrow your search
Your initial search will look for books, journal articles, newspapers etc, so you might get lots of results. To narrow your search, check the options down the left hand side, for example:

  • Content type – select what you need eg 'book/e-book'
  • Refine your search - eg 'items with full-text online'. This will limit your search to online full-text items.

Tip 2: Add more keywords
Depending on what you're looking for, you may have to add more keywords or add the author's surname eg 'sociology fulcher'. This is a more detailed search rather than just searching for 'sociology'

Tip 3: "Quotation marks" 
When searching for phrases, it can be useful to enclose them in quotation marks eg "higher education".  This will look for the phrase 'higher education' rather than the individual words, 'higher' and 'education'.

And last, but certainly not least:

Tip 4: Review your keywords!
The Library Search will only find what you tell it to search for. If it doesn’t find what you need, review your keywords. Remember, when searching for books, make your keywords quite general; you can be more detailed when searching for journal articles.

Quick links

Your Academic Librarian

College of Business, Arts and Social Sciences

Department of Arts and Humanities (English & Creative Writing, Theatre, Music, Film & TV and Games Design), Global Challenges
Matthew Parfitt

Brunel Business School
Alice Cann 

Department of Economics and Finance
Kwabena Sarfo-Adu Amankwah

Department of Education
Matthew Parfitt

Department of Social and Political Sciences (Sociology & Communications, Journalism and Anthropology) 
Kwabena Sarfo-Adu Amankwah

Brunel Law School
Claire Mazer

Department of Social and Political Sciences (Politics and History, Criminology, MPS - Policing)
Claire Mazer

College of Engineering, Design and Physical Sciences

Department of Computer Science
Sam Piker

Department of Design
Sam Piker

Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering
Sam Piker

Department of Mathematics
Sam Piker

Department of Chemical Engineering
Liane Frydland

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Liane Frydland 

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Aerospace Engineering
Liane Frydland 

College of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences

Department of Health Sciences and Brunel Medical School (Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Public Health & Health Promotion, Social Work and Medicine)
Shazia Arif

Department of Life Sciences (Biomedical Sciences, Environmental Sciences, Life Sciences, Psychology and Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences)
Joanne McPhie

Need help? Ask us...

Library service status

Current status of Library services

You can check the current status of services managed by Brunel Library below. To view the status of services managed by the Computer Centre, please visit their service status page.