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Linguistics: Databases

A guide to linguistics collections and e-resources
Subjects: Linguistics


Databases contain large amounts of data including (but not limited to) statistics, bibliographic information, images and abstracts.

Bibliographic databases are a useful tool for finding scholarly literature in your subject area. This includes (but is not limited to) journal articles, conference proceedings and books. They are very useful to consult when carrying out your own research because:

  • they provide powerful search functionality
  • have citation tools
  • have thesauri
  • their content is selected by experts in your subject

Bibliographic databases are helpful when you want to start exploring beyond your reading list or are researching a new topic.

On this page you will find recommended databases and guidance on how to search for and access databases.


Terms you may encounter in your research

A collection of structured and organised data that is stored, searched and accessed electronically.

Bibliographic database:
A searchable platform that contains descriptive records of articles, books, conference proceedings, audio-visual material, maps, newspapers, and more.

Abstracting service:
Used to refer to a bibliographic database, the service provides abstracts of publications.

Indexing service:
Used to refer to a bibliographic database, the service provides descriptors to help organise and navigate publications.

This means you can read the item in full from beginning to end, not just the abstract or summary.

Bibliographic Databases


Oxford subscribes to lots of databases you can use for free. You will likely find you need to use several databases for a thorough search of your subject area. 

The main Bibliographic Databases for Linguistics are:

You can also search for specific databases via the SOLO catalogue or via Databases A-Z on the SOLO home page.

Help with databases

For those seeking advice on accessing databases, we recommend the following guides:

Finding databases for Linguistics

You can use the subject drop-down box (highlighted in the screenshot below) to find a wide range of Linguistics resources on the Databases A-Z listing. New resources are being added all the time. You can also search for databases using keywords - all the databases should have a description telling you what they contain. If you find an interesting resource and would like more information or advice, please contact me.

Bibliographic databases

Corpora - you can find language or linguistic corpora under Databases A-Z. For more info see the corpora page 

Theses and Dissertations