Search Tools

Internet-Based Research Tools

 WCLS Online Databases:

The Whatcom County Library System (WCLS) has many online databases that members of the general public can easily access.  In order for you to access these databases, you will need to have a public library card. In addition to using your library number, you will also need to use a password, which usually is the last four digits of your phone number.  Access to these databases are FREE and we can't thank the public library enough for allowing us to provide links to them on our site.
Databases are located on the WCLS homepage. First, select the "Books and More" tab and then choose "Research." Here you will be able to see a brief description of each database.
WCLS databases include:
  • Britannica Library
  • Chilton Library
  • Consumer Reports
  • Culturegrams
  • eLibrary
  • Freegal
  • HeritageQuest
  • History Study Center
  • Mango Languages
  • Microsoft Imagine Academy
  • NoveList
  • ProQuest
  • ReferenceUSA
  • SIRS Discoverer
  • Testing and Education Reference Center
  • Washington Anytime Library
  • Zinio 

Search Engines:


Metasearch Engines: 


Subject Directories:


Resources Defined:

Database:  a usually large collection of data organized especially for rapid search and retrieval (as by a computer)
Search Engine:  computer software used to search data (as text or a database) for specified information; also: a site on the World Wide Web that uses such software to locate key words in other sites.
Metasearch Engines: Metasearch  engines search several search engines at one time.
Subject Directories: These directories are created and maintained by people.  Typically these sites focus on more specific subject areas.