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FSHS - Personal Financial Planning (PhD)

Guide for Personal Financial Planning PhD students

Finding Resources


Databases will find journal/magazine/newspaper articles (and in some cases other materials like book chapters, dissertations, conference presentations, pamphlets, etc.) To get to databases, go to the Libraries’ home page and click on databases under the search box. 

Recommended databases for this class include:

ABI Inform - One of our most useful business databases. 

EconLit - For economics literature

PsycInfo - Search psychology topics. Provides many useful search limits and a thesaurus that allows you to search for synonyms and related terms.

Sociological Abstracts and Social Services Abstracts - search topics from a sociological/social services perspective.

Abstracts in Social Gerontology and AgeLine - for aging-related topics

Other Useful Databases:

Web of Science: Includes Social Sciences Citation Index. In addition to searching by keyword, subject, author, etc. for articles in over 8,000 journals, you can do a "cited reference" search to see how frequently and where an article has been cited. Scopus also does cited reference searching, as does Google Scholar (I don't recommend Google Scholar for general searching - it's too broad and doesn't give you good control over your search terms or ways to limit your search).

Education databasesThe primary databases for education are ERIC and Education Full-Text.

And a few more to be aware of:

Dissertations and Theses Full Text – Find full-text copies of most dissertations written after 1996, and many earlier. If the full-text is not available, you may request it through Interlibrary Loan.

K-REx: K-State Research Exchange provides access to scholarly materials created by K-State faculty and students, including journal articles, conference papers, technical reports, white papers, electronic thesis/dissertation/reports (ETDR) and other digital resources.

SAGE Research Methods Online: A reference resource that will help you understand methods and create research projects.


How to search databases

Most databases, although they look different, search in similar ways. You can search the databases in many ways to find relevant research, including:

  • If the database has a thesaurus, use it to help you find appropriate subject terms

  • Use a keyword search for the specific subject you are interested in (retirement, military, leadership, etc...)

  • Use OR when you want to find either of the search terms, AND when you want both.

  • Try truncating keywords using asterisks: financ* to get finance, finances, finanacial, financing, etc. .

  • Put phrases in quotes: “financial planning", "credit cards"

  • Use limits to help find the specific kind of article you want. For example, PsycINFO lets you limit by population or type of study. Most datatabases have limits for date and type of material - you will often want to limit to scholarly journals.


Here is an example of a search using ABI/INFORM. The first line searches for "financial planning". The quotes mean that it will search for the phrase "financial planning" rather than financial and planning as separate words. On the second line "young adult*" OR "millennial*" means that it will find sources with EITHER of those words. The asterisk allows it to be a longer word, so we will get "young adult", "young adults", "young adulthood", "millennial" "millennials", etc. 

Getting the Materials


Many of the articles you find will be available online. If you don’t see the full text on the database you are searching, use the Get IT button to see if the full text of the article is available through another source. If you find a citation to something that we don’t own, most of the time we can borrow it from another library. PLEASE ALLOW YOURSELF ENOUGH TIME to do this! It takes up to 2-5 business days for articles and 5-7 business days for books (or longer if you are off campus). Click on “Interlibrary Loan” on the library home page or “we’ll try to get it for you” from the GetIT menu. For more information, see our Interlibrary Services page.


Example one: You can get the full text from the current database


Example two: You need to use Interlibrary Loan





Use the Search It box on the Libraries' home page to find books and other materials owned by K-State Libraries. 

WorldCat contains Information about books, serials, videos, and other items cataloged by institutions including K-State. It contains more than 57 million records with bibliographic information and information regarding which libraries hold the item in question. If K-State does not own the item you need, use Get IT to request it through Interlibrary Loan.

Google Books lists almost every book ever published, and will often give you a preview of the contents of the book. If K-State does not own the item you need, you can fill out an Interlibrary Loan Request.

Get Started with Search It

Watch this video (2:20) for a brief introduction to the functions and features of Search It.