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Trial Access to CSA Illustrata: Natural Sciences

13 March 2008 by Barry Brown

We have trial access through May 5th to CSA Illustrata: Natural Sciences. This database is available via the Databases A-Z list on the Mansfield Library homepage. A description of this database, by the publisher, is provided below. If you have any comments, questions, or feedback about this database please send them to Barry Brown.

CSA Illustrata: Natural Sciences is the first in a series of CSA Illustrata databases of searchable tables, figures, graphs, charts and other illustrations from the scholarly research and technical literature.

CSA employs what it calls “deep indexing” to categorize data, variables and other content represented in tables, maps, photographs and other figures. Usually, indexing of research articles is done at a rather high, general level where only the key concepts of the work are represented by a dozen or so index terms, but by going deeper and specifically indexing the content associated with all the individual tables and figures, CSA Illustrata enables the researcher to find information that otherwise would not be retrievable in traditional, article-level indexing systems. Search results – the objects – can be viewed in full, in either (thumbnail or enhanced format) along with the caption, author and source information and additional index terms that can be used for further searching. A link back to the parent record provides a summary view of all the objects associated with that paper. In most instances, the parent abstract is displayed and context is further preserved by links to the full-text documents when available. Thus the researcher can find relevant data faster and, because of the visual impact of the results, can quickly determine whether or not to spend time reading the source documents. The visualization of data and the interdisciplinary nature of CSA Illustrata: Natural Sciences can also lead to unexpected discoveries or connections between seemingly disparate pieces of work.

CSA Illustrata: Natural Sciences is interdisciplinary, covering a wide variety of journals from all major areas such as: Biology, Earth Sciences, Environmental Studies, Medical Sciences, Agriculture, Fish and Fisheries, Education, Geography, Veterinary Science, Food and Food Industries, Pharmacy and Pharmacology, Meteorology, Public Health and Safety, Water Resources, Conservation, Forests and Forestry.

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