About Thesaurus and Indexes

Subject headings, descriptors and thesauri terms are examples of "controlled vocabularies." They are lists of pre-defined, carefully selected words and phrases used to classify and organize information. Controlled vocabulary, which varies with discipline and database, describes the general content of an information unit, such as a book, an article, or an essay. Searching with a database subject index or thesaurus allows you to more precisely retrieve relevant information on your topic, view relationship between related terms, and identify synonyms and broader and narrower terms.

ATLA Religion Database - Subjects and Thesauri

Try this:

Go to opens new windowATLA Religion Database with AtlaSerials PLUS® and try the search below.

  1. Click More then indexes in top menu bar.
  2. For "Browse an Index," choose Subjects All from the drop menu.
  3. Key in a term, such as church history. Click Browse.
  4. Mark the checkbox(es) for relevant terms, then click Add, which moves your selected term(s) into the searching text box at the top of the page.
  5. Click Search. Use the limiters in the left menu to further define your search results.

    ATAL Index

Tutorial: opens new window Searching Subject Headings for Sacred Texts of World Religions (YouTube, 2:46 mins.)

Humanities International Complete - Thesaurus

Try this:
Go to opens new windowHumanities Source.
This database includes worldwide content covering all aspects of humanities.

  1. Click Thesaurus in the top menu bar.
  2. In the Browsing:Humanities Source -- Subject Terms text box, key in your term, such as Great Awakening. Select a search option: Term Begins With, Term Contains or Relevancy Ranked. Click Browse.
  3. Click the text link to view the Scope Note and related subjects or terms.
  4. Mark the checkbox(es) for your term(s). Click Add.

    Humanities Source subjects