The Kirtland Library has issues of Consumer Reports from January 2009-present as well as the annual Consumer Reports Buying Guide. Back issues are available for check-out, and the current issue is available for in-library use.
Your single sign-on gives you access to the Consumer Reports database. Through the databases you can search for and read Consumer Reports articles online.
When you go to the Consumer Reports database, you will first see the publication details. From this screen you can choose to search within the publication or choose a year and an issue from that year. You can browse the articles from the issue you choose, or you can search the issue/publication for a particular term.
When you choose "Search within this publication" you will see a page like the one below. Enter your search term in the search bar before the magazine title.
If you want to expand your search, choose from the search modes and expanders section. You will get more results, but they may not be as relevant.
Click on advanced search.
You will see a screen like the one below.
A. On the advanced screen page, enter your term in the second search box. At this point you can click the green search button or adjust your search by including an additional search term and/or selecting a field.
B. You can adjust your search by selecting a field (where you want the program to look for your term) from the drop down menu. If you choose a subject search, you will get fewer results, but they will be about that term. If you choose an all text search you will get more results but they may only mention the search term. As it says, selecting a field is optional. At any point you can click the green search button or continue to the middle of the page where there are search options.
C. In the search options section you can broaden your search by clicking in the boxes next to "applying related words", "subjects", etc.
The results page has quite a few features to help you find what you are looking for.
A. Sort your results - You can choose how you want the results sorted. Choose the results most relevant to your search term(s) to be listed first, or choose to have the most recent results listed first. Page Options - The page options menu lets you choose how much information and how many results per page are shown.
B. Unless you have chosen "detailed" from the page options, you will see a magnifying glass to the right of each result. Hovering over it will show information including subjects (good to make note of for additional searches) and abstracts.
C. In the column on the left you can limit your results in several ways, including by publication date.
D. You can limit your results to only those with certain subjects.
Once you choose an article, you will see that the database offers many options.
A. Rather than read the article as displayed (in HTML), you can choose to view it as a PDF. When you view it as a PDF it will look more like the print version of the magazine. The PDF includes page numbers to include in your citation.
B. The tools menu lets you easily print, share, and email the article. It provides a citation (We recommend you use NoodleTools because database citations vary in accuracy.) and a permalink. Notes and items added to folders will not be retained after the end of a session.
C. When you find a useful article, notice which subjects have been assigned to it. Use some of those terms in future searches for additional information about a topic. Clicking on one of the subject terms will initiate a subject search for that term that includes other periodicals. The results will not be restricted to Consumer Reports.
D. You have the option of listening as the article is read to you. The article can be downloaded as an mp3. You can translate the article into 34 other languages, but the listening feature is only available in English.
As a Michigan resident, you can also access Consumer Reports through the Library of Michigan's MeL website. To verify that you are a resident you may be asked to provide a driver's license number or library card number. You can access MeL resources without completing this verification if you use a library computer (public or academic).
If you scroll down the MeL welcome page a bit, you'll see a Featured Resources section and in that, Consumer Reports.