University Library & Learning Resources Center

SOC 431 - Methods of Sociological Research I
Ms. Zaworski

Reference Sources Articles Government Information World Wide Web Citing Your Sources

The purpose of this course research guide is to acquaint you with some of the resources in the University Library and on the Web useful for finding information on the topic you've chosen to research. Should you have questions, stop by the Reference Desk on the first floor. You may also call the Reference Desk at (334) 229-4110 during the hours the Library is open.

Reference Sources

Sources in the Library's Reference Collection and similar sources online can help you find brief factual information quickly. Be sure to browse the shelves near the sources listed below to find others. You can also search HORNetCat, the Library's online catalog, for additional Reference books by limiting the location to Reference and typing in words that describe your topic.

Subject Encyclopedias

Subject encyclopedias provide more in-depth coverage of a subject than do general encyclopedias such as the Encyclopaedia Britannica. A few examples of subject encyclopedias are listed below. You may ask at the Reference Desk for assistance with finding other subject encyclopedias.

  • Encyclopedia of Crime and Justice
    Main Reference: HV 6017 .E52 2002
  • Encyclopedia of Sociology
    Main Reference: HM 425 .E5 2000
  • The Gale Encyclopedia of Psychology
    Main Reference: BF 31 .G35 2001

CQ Researcher

Each CQ Researcher (ASU) report focuses on a single topic related to social, economic, political, health, or environmental issues. The reports provide a chronological overview and detail recent developments and opposing viewpoints. Each includes a bibliography that can lead you to additional sources of information on your topic.

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Journal Articles

The best method for finding journal articles is to use one of the Library's online article databases. For additional information on the databases listed below and for others, explore our list of databases. Our databases are easily accessible off campus by clicking on the database name and typing in the requested information. If you need additional assistance with accessing the databases, contact Randy Curtis (334 229-6968) or Cedric Davis (334 229-6998).

Some of the databases provide access to the entire text of articles. If the text of an article is not available in a database, check for the journal title in Serials Solutions (ASU) to determine if the article is available in another online database. Also check our online catalog HORNetCat for availability of journals in the Serials Department on the third floor. You may order those not available in the Library or via a full-text database through Interlibrary Loan.

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Government Information

Federal and state governments publish a plethora of information on many topics. Although the University Library is not a depository for government documents, you can request documents through Interlibrary Loan or visit the Library at Auburn University Montgomery, which is a depository. Also, many government documents are available through the Web.

Federal Government Information
Alabama Government Information
  • Alabama Government Manual
    Main Reference Desk: JK 4531 .A42 1994
  • Alabama.gov
Government Statistical Information

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World Wide Web

The World Wide Web is an outstanding but often bewildering source of information. Not everything you find will be authoritative, accurate, and valid. Try searching one of these to find more reliable Web sites.

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Citing Your Sources

APA Style

You will use the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association to cite your sources. A copy of the Manual is available at the Reference Desk on the first floor of the Library. Additional assistance with citing electronic publications is available from the APA online site.

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Course Research Guides | Information Literacy Program

Alabama State University | University Library & Learning Resources Center

Alabama State University
University Library & Learning Resources Center
Authored by: Barbara Hightower, Information Literacy Librarian
All contents copyright 2003, ASU. All rights reserved.
August 26, 2003
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