Library Resources

Library Resources

Finding Peer Reviewed Articles

Finding Peer Reviewed Articles

A common question students have is, “How do I tell if an article has been peer-reviewed?”  A peer-reviewed journal is one in which other experts in the field read the articles before they are printed, and verify that the research is sound and that they are suitable for publication. It is a method for improving the reliability and credibility of a journal.  However, it slows down publication – an article might not see print for two years after it’s written, if it undergoes the peer-review process.  So peer-review is great for scholarly research, but poor for news.  That’s why not everything is peer-reviewed.  Many article databases that we subscribe to allow you to filter to just peer-reviewed journals. In the … Continued
Islamic Heritage

Islamic Heritage

Oxford Islamic Studies Online is a new database available through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association.  It is designed to collate the best current scholarship in order to promote a more true and informed understanding of the Islamic world.   OISO is a great first choice for study on any Islamic topic.  It includes everything from introductory works such as What Everyone Needs to Know About Islam to very in-depth sources like the six-volume Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World.  In fact, there are over 5000 entries in a variety of categories covering topics like history, politics, culture, and religious practices.  Biographies, maps, timelines, and other material accent these articles.  There are … Continued
African American History Month

African American History Month

Happy African American History Month!  For most of us, this is a time to hear brief biographies of black pioneers and innovators, and experience a slice of American history that can often be overlooked.  It reminds us of the universality of human achievement.  And the library can help with this – sources like Biography in Context offer great overviews of the lives of famous leaders and innovators.  But perhaps this year, you’d like to dig deeper into the African American experience.    One great source for this is the database Black Thought and Culture – including interviews, essays, pamphlets, letters, and speeches, in addition to journal articles, it offers a rich and textured look at primary documentation – black history from … Continued
Take a Picture: Reference Question of the Week

Take a Picture: Reference Question of the Week

An interesting reference question that’s popped up a few times this week concerns finding information about old artists and photographers.   The best source to start with is Biography in Context.  Type in the name of your artist – you’ll find biographies and articles.  Let’s say we’re interested in Augustus Washington, who was active in the 1840s and 1850s.  You’ll get a results set like this:  The first is an extensive biography for him, and the second is a newspaper article about his work.  If you need more, JSTOR is also a good source for older articles.   But what about high resolution images of their photographs or artwork?  You might have some luck with ImageQuest, which includes images from Encyclopedia Britannica … Continued
American Indian History Databases

American Indian History Databases

Researching American Indian History? The library has some great primary and secondary resources to help you in your quest! If you’re new to the subject and need an overview of some possible topics, American Indian History Online is a great place to start. From the database homepage, click “Events and Topics” to explore overviews of themes such as American Indians in the American Revolution (see “Wars and Rebellions”) or employment and labor in the ancient Americas (see “Economics, Trade, and Labor”). This database provides you with an encyclopedic overview of a variety of topics, biographies of prominent individuals, images, maps, and some supplementary primary sources. Once you have a basic understanding of your chosen topic, try exploring secondary resources with … Continued