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Which Library databases have a thesaurus and where can I locate it?

A database thesaurus contains subject terms which are assigned to each resource in a database in order to describe its content. Searching with subject terms can be a much more precise and effective search method than searching with keywords. To learn more about subject terms and database thesauri see the Subject Terms and Database Thesauri section of the Research Process Guide.

The Library databases listed below contain searchable thesauri. 


EBSCOhost may be accessed by hovering over Popular Databases in the main navigation bar found on the Library’s homepage. From the EBSCOhost landing page, hover over Subjects in the top navigation menu and select the appropriate thesaurus based on your subject area. Note that OmniFile Full Text Select is a multidisciplinary thesaurus.  

EBSCO screenshot wtih the Subjects drop-down menu selected.

Alternatively, you may choose to search an individual EBSCOhost database and its thesaurus. Our EBSCOhost databases which include thesauri are Business Source Complete, MEDLINE with Full Text, Education Research Complete, APA PsycArticles, APA PsycBooks, APA PsycInfo, SPORTDiscus, and OmniFile Full Text. You may select an individual database by clicking on the Choose Databases hyperlink located directly above the drop-down search fields.

EBSCO screenshot with the Choose Databases link highlighted.

Once you have made your selection, the top navigation menu will now feature a Thesaurus tab. Please note, the thesaurus available within MEDLINE Complete is referred to as MeSH 2017 (Medical Subject Headings). For additional information about using MeSH subject terms, please see the Medline/MeSH Workshop recording on the Library Workshop Videos page. Additionally, you can always verify which database you are searching by viewing the text displayed directly above the search boxes to the left of the Choose Databases hyperlink.

EBSCO SPORTDiscus with Full Text screenshot with the Thesaurus link highlighted.


ProQuest may be accessed by hovering over Popular Databases in the main navigation bar found on the Library’s homepage. From the ProQuest landing page, click on the Thesaurus hyperlink located above the drop-down search fields on the right hand side of the page.

ProQuest screenshot with the Thesaurus link highlighted.


ERIC may be accessed by hovering over Research Resources in the main navigation bar found on the Library’s homepage and clicking on Databases. Scroll through the alphabetical list of databases and select ERIC. From ERIC’s landing page, select the Thesaurus tab to begin searching the thesaurus descriptors.

ERIC screenshot with the Thesaurus tab highlighted.

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