Thesauri or Subject Headings
December 11, 2014
Most library databases have a thesaurus of terms, subject headings, or descriptors developed by the database producer or a professional organization. For example, the Education Resources Information Center creates the thesaurus for the ERIC database. Why does this matter to you? You can get more focused results sets by using the assigned terms. Looking at the scope note (brief description of what it’s used for) for a term lets you know if you are using the right one, and you can often see a list of broader, narrower, or related terms. Need help using subject headings? Ask a Librarian!