Study smarter

Use the right resources and take your studies to the next level

We provide a wide array of high-quality resources to help make your studies a success. We have a web page that lists our new resources, and generally, as a starting point, we recommend you use Library Search – the gateway to the Library’s information resources in both print and electronic form, including books, journals, newspapers, databases and much, much more.

Some resources will be more relevant to your studies than others. To help you decide what is a good academic resource for your subject, check out this elearning.

Some recommended resources and study aids are listed below, each offering a different way of extending your knowledge.


Newspapers are a valuable source of information. They provide an insight into what interests and concerns people both now and in the past.  

The quality of newspaper articles can vary considerably. This means you’ll need to evaluate what you find carefully for bias or misleading information. Nevertheless, newspapers can be very helpful if used thoughtfully. 

  • They allow you to see what people thought and how they viewed an event when it happened. Whether it be a film review, a protest march, or a change to legislation. Newspapers can provide insight from several angles.
  • They can help you to look at the historical detail of an event, the context around it and help you to follow changes over time. 
  • Newspapers are useful for dissertation research, critical thinking, and employability research. For example, Factiva and are great for doing pre-interview research in areas that you’re looking to get a job in.

Many UK newspapers allow access to recent content free via their websites. However, the Library provides some excellent newspaper sources that allow you to search simply and easily across many newspapers at once. All of these sources can be found through Library Search.


The University offers more than 350 databases that you as a student can search through. Using either Library Search or the Databases web page, you can search by subject and look for resources tailored to you and your course. The Library offers databases for Newspapers, Dissertations, Theses and many other categories depending on your subject need.

Your Academic Support Librarian can help you use databases effectively.

Audiobooks & Ebooks

The new Audio Books Collection in The Library consists of many titles, and novels. These Audio Books are expected to assist our visually impaired students’ access to resources. Academics are also showing an interest in purchasing Audio Books for Reading lists to assist students with their learning.

The University offers more than 825,000 Ebooks titles that are accessible from any device, anywhere, any time! You don’t have to wait for physical copies to come off loan or wait for requests to go through. You can also write notes on the Ebooks and print them out for studying and later use. Another helpful feature is being able to search for keywords without having to read through the book to find specific content.


Seriously, you can watch films as part of your studies! Film and television offer brilliant, engaging, and valuable sources across subject areas. With more than tens of thousands of films and television programs, we’d really recommend you explore our online television and film databases Kanopy and Box of Broadcasts.

Included are classic documentaries on social and political issues like Harlan Country USA, and a vast number of in-depth video courses through The Great Courses.

The Library also holds specialist online video collections. Sage Video: Counselling and Psychotherapy offers over 130 hours of tutorials, interviews, and counselling demonstrations.

And if you’re still doing it the old fashioned way, The Library stocks a plethora of DVDs which you can search using Library Search.

Dissertations & Theses

During the course of your studies, you may find that you need to search for dissertations or theses. There are many reasons why using this type of research can be useful. Maybe you would like to see what other research has been undertaken in relation to your topic? Or perhaps you would like to see what a dissertation or thesis looks like?  

You can access dissertations and theses by previous University of Salford students using the ‘Advanced Search’ option in Library Search. Take a look at our University of Salford e-theses collection which covers mostly PhD level research.

There are a number of dissertation and theses databases you can use to find dissertations and theses from other academic institutions. You can also access these through Library Search.   

Some of the databases you can access include: 

Find out more about the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database on our blog post: ProQuest Dissertations and Theses – You can do more

Popular resources

Some individual resources that are popular are:

  • Macmillan Social Work Tool – An online toolkit of resources which helps Social Work students develop the knowledge, core skills and confidence to succeed on their course and placements.
  • Birds of the World – A powerful resource that brings deep, scholarly content from four celebrated works of ornithology into a single platform.
  • Business Source Ultimate – Provides access to more than 3,500 full text journals (including Harvard Business Review), industry and company profiles, trade publications, case studies and SWOT analyses.

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This blog is written by library staff at the University of Salford.
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