When you are off campus, you will need to set up a Proxy on your computer to gain access to the Library's licensed resources, such as e-books, e-journals, and article databases. Directions are here.
Use the link to Ask a Librarian, or contact me directly. See my contact information in the box at the far right.
As you do research, you'll accumulate journal and book citations that you'll want to keep organized. Refworks is a free online web tool for managine your references. Sign up for a Refworks account and take a library workshop on how to get the most out of it.
Find books, textbooks and journals on your topic in the UCSD Libraries' catalog, Roger.
Limit to "Journals and Serials" to search for journal titles. Search for "textbook" as a keyword to find textbooks.
Use these resources for overview articles on your topic.
Find journal articles on your topic. In some databases you'll find conference papers as well. SciFinder requires an account with username/password. Information on account setup.
Use UC-eLinks to get to the full text of articles, if the Library licenses it.
Google can give you a start on your research, but using Google Scholar is smarter. You'll search only academic resources, and if you set you Scholar Preferences to "University of California, San Diego - UC-eLinks" you'll be able to use UC-eLinks to get to article PDFs when you're off campus.
Patents can give you valuable technical information and are an important way to protect intellectual property.