Tip 1: Although I am a big fan of using online databases to find scholarly journal articles, for this particular class, I am suggesting that you consider start your research into your historical context with reference sources and books/book chapters. These sources are better at giving you the background and overview of a historical topic, while scholarly articles in specialized history journals are often on extremely narrow topics.
Tip 2: Remember to mine the bibliographies of reference sources and any other good source you find to more sources. This can save you a lot of time and is something that scholars do themselves! Check and see if the library has a source by typing in the name of the article (add the author's last name if the title is short) into our Library Search tool.
Tip 3: Use our interlibrary loan systems! Remember that Professor Sorisio wants good quality sources. If we don't have have a recent book or a great article on a topic, we can still get it in 2-3 business days.
Tip 4: Remember that the key to finding good sources is to be willing to try more than one database and try multiple searches. Remember that changing even one word in a search will bring back very different results. For instance 'Hawthorne women', 'women 19th', 'women nineteenth' and 'marriage 19th' might all bring back useful sources if you were researching how Hawthorne's portrayal of women in the Scarlet Letter reflected the roles and status of women in the 19th century.
Given that we are all working remotely for the rest of the semester, starting with ebooks is going to be fastest and easiest.
You can limit any library catalog search to ebooks by doing the following steps.
1) search for a topic in the catalog.
2) Near the top of the left-hand column, under the heading Show Only, click on Full Text Online.
3) A bit lower in the same column, under the heading Source Type, click on Books.
4) Now scroll back to the top of that column and find your two limiters there. You need to lock them in place. However over each until an image of a blue padlock appears. Click the padlock. The closed blue padlock image will remain.
5) Click on the title of a book to see the table of contents and find the link to the full text.
If you need a book that we only own in print, we will mail it to you, but that will take a few days up to a week. Currently we only have staff entering the library two days a week to do this. We also send a postage paid return envelope with it.
If you find a print book you'd like to have mailed, you can request that it be mailed to your home address.
The steps are:
1) Click on the title of the book to get to the information screen
2) Log into the system so it knows its you!
3) Click on the request button.
4) Under the 'where would you like to pick this up" menu select Home Address and put your home address in the comments field.
This video will lead you through the process:
Spring 2020: The library does have a limited ability to scan chapters from books to send to you, but you need to be able to identify a particular chapter either by title or page numbers. We usually won't be able to do more than one chapter per book, because of copyright issues. It is a quicker option than having a full book mailed, but still may take several days.
To make a request to get a chapter scanned:
A number of academic publishers (including Oxford, Cambridge, Routledge, and Blackwell) publish series of books under the titles Introduction/Companion/Guide/Handbook to_______. In these companions, each chapter is dedicated to a sub-topic or time period. I buy a lot of these for both Literature and History, because they often provide the prefect level of background information.