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Finding Information: Saving Your Search

Introduction to Saving Your Search

Whichever database(s) you use, you will want to keep a record to remind you of searches you have tried, and any relevant resources you have found. We highly recommend that you use a method that is as effective and efficient as possible. 

In this section, we’ll look at two methods that are commonly used to save searches and results.

Saving Your Search

Most databases that you use will recognise that you're a student from the University of Suffolk, but they won’t recognise you as an individual student. This might feel confusing as you probably entered your ID and password into the user login screen, like this:

However, if you want to save your personalised search keywords and search results, you must create a personal profile in each database that you use. 

To create a personal profile, look for the ‘sign in’ option, which is usually at the top of the screen, and follow the prompts.

Once you completed the account verification, you can then carry on searching for information and then save a record of the resources that you have found. In the future, when you return to the database, you can sign into your account and see that all the resources you saved are still there.

TIP! Don’t be misled! Some databases might have a ‘Save’ option but, if you aren’t signed into a personal profile, the database will ‘forget’ everything you think you have saved. 

You’d need to create a personal profile in each of the databases that you use, which can be time-consuming. Alternatively, you could consider using the research management tool option.

Using a reference management tool helps you stay organised as well as saving time and stress.

Research management tools (sometimes called ‘reference management’ or ‘citation management’ tools) are software applications that help you manage your research activities i.e., one centralised place where you can keep a record of all the things you have found such as books, online articles, webpages, YouTube clips etc.

You can also use research management tools to help you generate citations and references.

There are numerous research management tools available, all with different brand names (e.g., RefWorks, EndNote, Zotero, Mendeley, Evernote) and they all do similar things. 

For guidance on using research management tools, refer to the below links: 

Once you become familiar with the basics of using a reference management tool, you can try some of the advanced features that are available.

TIP! Develop the habit of using a research management tool whenever you are searching for information and save everything you find that could be relevant. We promise you that it’s worth it