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Welcome to the J.N. Desmarais Library and Archive

This course was created by Leïla Saadaoui, French Language Services Librarian and adapted to English by Alain Lamothe, Chair, Department of Library and Archives.

The following videos will enable you to:

  • Familiarize yourself with the services offered by the Library and Archives (in particular during the current pandemic);
  • Discover research guides associated with your subject area;
  • Discover online dictionaries and encyclopedias, in both English and French;
  • Learn how to conduct simple and advanced searches in Omni;
  • Learn how to borrow books in person and from off-campus;
  • Learn how to use our various e-book collections (locate appropriate e-books and e-book chapters);
  • Learn how to retrieve articles from e-journals and chapters from e-books;
  • Evaluate if an article is from a peer-reviewed journal and is a scholarly or academic article;
  • Learn how to search various online databases (Ebsco, ProQuest, Web ofKnowledge,...);
  • Learn how to format citations based on a variety of standards such as APA,MLA,...;
  • Familiarize yourself with Zotero, a citation management tool.

Virtual Tour of the J.N. Desmarais Library

Link to the video

You will be able to:

  • Identify the J.N. Desmarais Library building

  • See where the Library Help Desk and the IT Help Desk are located

  • See where the Centre for Academic Excellence is located 

  • Locate the Periodical, Microform, Circulating and Government Documents collections.

  • Find the Brenda Wallace Computer Centre and the Brenda Wallace Reading Room

  • Locate the Archives

  • Find the offices of the librarians

  • Navigate the library's three floors

  • To see where you can work and study while in the library

Session 1 - Introduction to the Library

Link to the video workshop

You will learn about:

  • The services and resources available to you at the library

  • The J. N. Desmarais Library and Archives web site

  • Current library services, updated on the Covid-19 FAQ and our News section

  • Points of access to library resources

  • Research guides by disciplines

  • Omni

  • Find a book (Borrow the book or Digitize a section of it)

Session 2 - Library Research Skills Tutorial on D2L

Link to the Video Workshop

You will learn how to:

Access the Library Research Skills Tutorial on D2L

Navigate through the Modules

How to successfull complete all quizzes

How to access your Certificate (Proof of course completion).

Session 3 - Omni

Link to the video workshop

You will learn about: Omni

  • Your library account

  • Simple search, advanced search

  • Search Laurentian University’s collection / search all 16 partner libraries

  • Author search, title search

  • Search based on a citation:

(article, permalink on Omni) Hagège, C. (2000). La vie secrète du langage. La Linguistique, 36(1/2), 63‑69.

(book, permalink on Omni) Gervais, G. (2000). Les jumelles Dionne et l’Ontario français, 1934-1944. Prise de paro

For the purchase of required course textbooks: Visit Laurentian Bookstore, your local bookstore, online store like Amazon or directly on the publishers’ websites.


Session 4 - Online Databases

Link to the video workshop

You will learn:

  • How to access online databases

  • How Ebsco online databases work

  • How Proquest online databases work

How to search for articles in a specialized online database (Web of Knowledge)

Session 5 - E-Journals

Link to the video workshop

You will learn:

  • How to search for peer-reviewed academic articles

  • What makes an article academic in nature

  • How to search a subject in a specialized online database.

  • Scholars Portal - E-journals

  • Periodicals - newspaper (daily, weekly), bulletin, magazine, academic journal.


Suggested reading: Chapter 6 (p. 138-140) in Smale, B. and J. Fowlie. (2009). How to succeed at University: An Essential Guide to Academic Skills and Personal Development. SAGE  Publications.  (access restricted to LU)


Session 6 - E-Books

Link to the video workshop

You will learn:

  • How to access e-books via Omni

  • The different e-books platforms available to you (Ebsco, ProQuest, Scholars Portal, etc.)


See the «Electronic book collections» on the library’s Research Guides.


Session 7 - Citation Styles and Zotero

Link to the video workshop

You will learn:

  • How to cite sources (Citation Style Guides)

  • The different citation styles currently used at the Laurentian.

  • The tools available to store citations and generate citation lists

  • How to use Zotero, the citation manager (Zotero)


We advise you to create a free account on Zotero to download your Zotero library (click on Download and follow the instructions:

You can also create groups in Zotero in order to share your references with others (see further information below on Zotero Documentation).

The University of Ottawa also has an excellent series of instructional videos at

We are available to help you with your research needs:



Have a great academic year!