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CENE 150 Civil and Environmental Engineering for a Sustainable Future

A guide for CENE 150 students to help with their essays and video presentation using library resources

How to Find a Case Study

1. Experiment with searching "case study"

Don't rely on searching just for "case studies," but sometimes it can be a good way to narrow down your results. While some writers and researchers will include the actual phrase "case study" in the title of their report, many don't! Some databases have a filter for Case Studies (just like some have filters for peer-reviewed journal articles, full text, or date range), so look around to see if there's a check box to limit your search that way.

2. Combine different articles

If you're looking for something really niche or specific, you may have to read several articles and then take what you learn from each and merge them together. For example, look for articles on construction of your particular situation, look for synonyms, and do some more searches to get enough information.

3. Try different databases

Different databases have different content from magazines, journals, etc. So if you're not finding what you need in one of them, don't just spin your wheels! Try another one. Check out the list of engineering and interdisciplinary databases below.

4. Try journals directly

If you skip a database and head straight to a relevant journal, you might be able to find information more quickly. That's because journals are typically about a very specific topic.

5. Try some more resources outside of Cline Library

Consider searching the internet for companies that have been involved in actual projects to find case studies. Actual projects that have been done for a given city or municipality might have their supporting documentation freely available on their websites. And don't be afraid of Wikipedia! It's easy to search and get a brief overview of a case study. However, don't use Wikipedia itself as your source - scroll down to the bottom of the article and use the sources under "References."

Interdisciplinary Databases