Below is a collection of resources that you can use to search for information when reading up and carrying out your research project.

1. Wikipedia:

Wikipedia is a collaborative effort of people around the world. It is NOT a scientific resource so you should never cite wikipedia as a reference. Here are some ways that you can use it:

– Retrieve background information on a topic you are reading up on. Links to other relevant topics can also be found.

– When searching for information on an unfamiliar subject, wikipedia can be used to look for keywords that can be used in journal searches.

– References often cited at the bottom of a wikipedia page can be read and sometimes cited.

2. Google Scholar:

Search for titles of relevant literature (peer-reviews papers, theses, books, abstracts, articles) from a diverse range of subjects.

3. Abstract Search

Science Direct

– Search database by keyword, author etc. View abstract (sometimes figures)

– ScienceDirect contains over 25% of the world’s science, technology and medicine full text and bibliographic information.

Entrez (NCBI):

– PubMed – citations and abstracts

– Others – mostly abstracts only

– PubMed Central: open access journals (see below)


– Search database and view abstract

– Comprehensive collection includes more than 8,000 online publications

Wiley InterScience:

– Search database and view abstracts

– Archive contains over 3 million articles across 1400 journals

4. National library e-resources:

– Library catalogue – The National Library of Singapore has a comprehensive collection of books that can be borrowed. The catalogue can be searched online:

– eResources – Requires registration and log-in but is free. The NLB’s eResources provides access to a wide range of journals (full-text) but mostly only for slightly outdated issues:

5. Open access journals (databases/directory/journals)

Directories and databases of open access journals providing downloadable full-text articles. Directories list the titles and links to the various journals whereas databases collate the contents, making it easier to search the contents of a few different journals at one time.

PubMed Central (Database):

BioOne (Database):

Bentham (directory):

– to search journal titles:

– list of journal titles:

Directory of open access journals (Directory/database for some titles):

PLoS Biology (Journal):

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (Journal):

6. Popular Science
For keeping updated on current research in the world.

– Discover Magazine:

– American Scientist:

– Naturenews:

– National Geographic:

– R&D:

– Scientific American:

– New Scientist:

– Science Daily:

– BBC Science and Nature:

Quick tips on how to search the internet

Using Boolean operators

AND – Search engine will search for both all items connect by AND within the same site. For example, searching for “turtle AND conservation” will give you results of web pages containing both the words “turtle” and “conservation” and non with only one of these two words.

OR – Search engine will search for either of the words connected by OR. For example, search for “turtle OR terrapin” will give you results of web pages containing either the word “turtle” or the word “terrapin”. This is especially useful if the subject you are searching for can be referred to in different ways.

NOT – Search engine will exclude the terms after NOT. For example, search for “turtle NOT tortoise” will give you results containing the word “turtle” but exclude sites containing the word “tortoise” from the results.

Wildcard “*” – The asterisk (*) can be used after a root word to search for all forms of that word. For example searching for “test*” will give you results that include the words “testing” and “tests”.

Phrases “adjacent words” – When searching for specific phrases, for example “red eared slider”. Entering the words within quote marks will search for results containing these words in exactly the same order that you searched.

Searching for keywords

When you are performing a search, do take into account that there may be alternative ways of phrasing your search. For example, when doing a search on the topic of turtle conservation, you might want to search for “saving turtles” or “conserving turtle/tortoise/terrapin habitats”. If you are unsure of alternative ways of phrasing your topics, do a quick search on an encyclopedia or wikipedia, or a dictionary/thesaurus first. Leave out redundant terms such as “a”, “the” and “to”.