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Scientific Writing

Searching strategies, research databases, evaluating sources, recognizing and avoiding plagiarism, managing bibliographic citations

Support and Helpful Tools

Professional Writing Program Modules: Check out this ELMS site for lots of resources for learning professional writing

Database Finder: A list of all the databases UMD has organized by type, subject, or alphabetical. Check out the subject listings for Librarian picked top databases by field!

Reload Button: Refreshes websites through UMD's proxies and will prompt you to login with your UMD credentials. If you find your resources outside of the Libraries webpages, use this to ensure UMD access.

Interlibrary Loan: Use Interlibrary Loan (ILL) to request materials UMD does not subscribe to or own. Great for requesting articles and book chapters!

Free Research Workshops: Sign up for workshops offered by the Libraries on a variety of research support topics including using citation managers, learning R, GIS, or LaTeX, and many more!

ZoteroBib: Like EasyBib, minus the ads! Quickly create a reference list in MLA, APA, or other citation styles to copy and paste into your research paper.

Suggested Resources

Scholarly Articles – for scientists by scientists; “how we came up with it and tested it”
Patents – tech specs; “how we designed it”
Handbooks – background knowledge; “here are the essentials”
Ethics/Society Topics – cross-cutting areas that consider people, the environment, and more
  • Check out this Ethics Encyclopedia
  • Search for a topic plus the word ethics in the library catalog to locate ebooks
  • Try subject-specific databases from the Database Finder and search for ethical articles and books in individual databases (some have ethics-related journals too)

Search Tips

Search Tips

An asterisk (*) stands in for any group of letters 

SEARCHING: librar* 

FINDS: library, libraries, librarian

Quotation marks keep words together, and in order

“this is a phrase”    this is not


'AND' narrows your search and 'OR' broadens your search (see below)

AND/OR Boolean search diagram

    “global warming”                  “climate change”                 “global warming”                    “global warming”                              

                                                                                                    AND                                          OR

                                                                                             “climate change”                    "climate change”

                                                                                              (fewer results)                         (more results)