Academic Search Complete

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Welcome to the Academic Search Complete Tutorial!

Academic Search Complete is an interdisciplinary database containing thousands of scholarly and popular articles from the nineteenth century through today.

In this tutorial you will learn:

  • How to access Academic Search Complete
  • How to conduct basic, Boolean, and faceted searches
  • How to access the full text of articles
  • How to use each source's record to get its citation and permalink
How to Use This Guide:
  • Use the arrows arrows below to navigate through the tutorial
  • Click on images to enlarge
  • Click on underlined text to open a definition box


Open Academic Search Complete:
  • Select A from the Databases section of the Loyola Libraries homepage

Image of Loyola Libraries home page.

  • Select Academic Search Complete from the list of databases.

NOTE: If you are off-campus you will be asked to sign in with your Loyola Universal ID (UVID).

Image of "Database Search Results A."

  • You should now see a new page that reads near the top, "Searching: Academic Search Complete"

Academic Search Complete Search Page


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Conduct a basic search:

  • Enter a search term in the box at the top of the screen, click Search, then check your results
  • In the example below I searched for Lake Michigan and returned 3,089 results
Academic Search Complete results


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Conduct a Boolean search:
  • Keeping the search term from your initial search in the top box, use the AND operator and refine your search with a related term in the box below, then click Search. For my search, I used Lake Michigan AND PCBs and got 97 results.
Search with PCBs and results


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Conduct a Faceted Search with Filters:
  • Experiment with at least two filters on the left side of the screen (there are even more than the ones outlined in the picture above)
 Image of Academic Search Complete filters

Full Text

Getting the full text of an article may be presented in three ways: 
1. HTML or PDF Full Text: These links will take you to the full text as an HTML or PDF file within Academic Search Complete.
       Image of HTML and PDF links to an article's full text.
2. Linked Full Text: This is a link to the article through its journal or publisher where the full text will usually be displayed as an HTML or PDF file.
       Image of a full text link through a journal or publisher.
3. Find it at Loyola: You'll see this if the article is not accessible online and a copy needs to be made. To get a copy of the article, click on the link, then complete and submit the form.
       Image of the "Find it at Loyola" link.


A source's record contains its bibliographic data, as well as an abstract summarizing what the article is about. The titles in your search results are hyperlinks to records.
  • Click on a title in your search results to access its record
Image of where to click to access the source record.
  • You should now see the full record, including the source's bibliographic data and abstract. The column to the right of the record features helpful tools for researchers, including the Cite and Permalink features circled in red.
Image of a source's full record.
  • Click on Cite
  • You should now see options to copy the citation or export it into bibliographic software.

Image of where to find a source's citation in its record.



There may be times when you need to download another copy of a source, reread an abstract, or check bibliographic data. In these situations, having the permalink to a source's record is invaluable.

Get the Permalink

  • Click Permalink on the right side of the screen.
Request a Permalink
  • You should now see the permalink hyperlink at the top of your screen

Image of where to copy a permalink in a source's record. 

Wrap Up

Congratulations! You've finished the Academic Search Complete tutorial!

To get additional help from a librarian, please click here or stop by the Information Commons 2nd floor Reference Desk or Lewis Library Reference Desk.

Please click the arrow below, fill in your name, and click submit.


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You can enter multiple email addresses separated by commas. If you are doing this for a class, you may need to enter your instructor's email address also.


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