Resources for Psychology

Hello, I'm Sarah Gwenlan, the subject librarian for psychology. This page is designed to help you get the most out of our resources for psychology. Please get in touch with any questions, I'm here to help!

I usually work Monday to Thursday 9am to 3pm. Email me at or phone 01970 621870.

Click on the tabs below to explore our Psychology resources.‌

Printed Materials

The main collection of printed material (books and journals) for psychology can be found in the Hugh Owen Library on Level F (top floor), though some subjects can be found on Level E as shown below:

BF1-990 Psychology
BF173-175.5 Psychoanalysis
BF201 Cognitive Psychology
BF231-299 Sensation. Aesthesiology
BF309-499 Consciousness. Cognition
BF511-593 Affection. Feeling. Emotion
BF636-637 Applied psychology
BF712-724.85 Developmental psychology
GV706.4 Sport psychology
H61-HA32 Social science research methods
HM1033 Social psychology
HQ767-781 Childhood development
ML3830 Psychology of music
QP360 Neuropsychology / Biological psychology [Level E]
R726.7 Health psychology [Level E]

For general guidance watch this video, 'How To Find A Book'.

Tip for new students: it can be useful to browse the contents of the Effective Study Collection at the start of your course (one of many collections). It has books on time management, writing essays, research methods, referencing and so on. Borrow any that look useful for a good headstart with your studying.

Electronic Resources


Primo is not just a catalogue of all the books and journals (both print and electronic) that the library provides access to. It also lets you find journal articles on the topics you are researching. It should always be your first place to go when you are looking for quality academic resources.

The easiest way to find articles on a topic is to go to Primo, sign in, then click on the tab which is labelled 'Articles & more' (above the search box). This will search Primo Central. Primo Central is a massive database of full-text journal articles on every subject. Enter search terms then click Search. You will get a list of results, linking through to the full-text for each article.

If there are too many results then add refinement options from the left, or make your search terms more specific. If there are too few results then consider whether your search terms are too specific, or maybe use wildcards. It is possible to create quite complex search queries; see here for more guidance on making searches more or less specific.

Key psychology resources

If you wish, you can also search citation databases (which contain details of research and articles) and resources directly. For psychology the main resources are:

  • PsycARTICLES - provides direct links to the full text for you to download. However, PsycArticles only provides access to journals published by the APA and is therefore limited in the range of topics it covers.
  • Web of Science - summaries (abstracts) of scholarly journal articles and dissertations in psychology and related subjects. You can check for the availability of full text articles by clicking on the '@aber' icon next to search results.
  • ScienceDirect - an information source for scientific, technical, and medical research.

Benefits of searching these databases directly:

  • there may be fewer results, but perhaps they will be more relevant;
  • it is useful to have experience of directly searching sources.

Downsides of searching these databases directly:

  • they are indexed in Primo Central too so their results would appear there anyway;
  • searching them directly means means fewer results than searching Primo Central;
  • results won't always lead to a full text article.

Finding and using journal articles off-campus:

Part 1 - setting up a VPN connection (2:55)

Part 2 - searching for journal articles (1:38)

Note that when accessing these databases directly while off-campus, you should sign in in to Primo first.

Search engines

There are also specialised academic or scientific search engines you could try. The results will probably be inferior to Primo Central, and often won't lead to full text, but you could try them and compare the results. The main ones worth trying are Google Scholar and Zetoc.

Information Skills

Finding and evaluating information

Referencing and plagiarism

Other help

Services for Academic Staff

Your subject librarian can provide skills training for students and staff, resource evaluation and more. For full details see this page.