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How to Research Literature Topics: Find Biographies

A guide to finding sources for literature papers at Valencia libraries.

How to Search for Biographies

You can find brief biographical articles about your author by searching in library databases. You can often find longer, book-length biographies by searching in the library catalog.

Recommended Databases for Brief Author Biographies

  • Literature Resources from Gale (Gale)
    • Enter the author's name in Person By or About.
    • Biography articles will show on the second tab. Be sure that the articles you choose refer to the right person. If necessary, limit your results in the yellow column to the left.
  • Literary Reference Center (EBSCO)
    • Search by author.
    • The first tab in this database is ALL results combined. Click the Biographies tab to see just biographies.
  • Biography in Context (Gale)
    • Search for your author's name in the search window at the top of the screen.
    • Select the correct person from the list of results. Be careful! Often there is more than one person with the same name.

Finding Biographies in Books

Go to the Library Catalog

  1. Click on Advanced Search.
  2. Change the drop-down menu for the first box to Subject, then enter the author's name. (It's important to search by subject, not by author because you want to find books about this author, not works by this author).
  3. Add the word 'biography' to your search.
  4. Limit the search to Books or to E-books. Note that not all print books are available as e-books, and vice versa.

To find a print book, write down the call number.

To open an e-book, click View Online. (It helps to be logged in through Atlas. If you are not logged in through Atlas, you will be prompted to enter your Borrower ID and PIN.)

Subject Guide

Connecting to the Library via Atlas

To Connect to the Library via Atlas:

1. Log in to Atlas: http://atlas.valenciacollege.edu.

2. Go to the MyAtlas tab, Courses tab, or Employees tab.

3. Under Libraries, click Search the Library.