Chapter 4 Take-aways

1. Indexes can be a couple of things. Usually at the back of a book there is an index with words or phrases in alphabetical order with page numbers in the book where you can find that term. In libraries, indexes are something else altogether. In libraries, we use periodical indexes. For what? Periodical indexes are the main tools for finding articles in periodicals. Let me say that a different way. If you want to find periodical (journal, magazine, newspaper) articles, you would use a periodical index.

If you tell a librarian that you need information on PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) in children, and you need to use scholarly journals, the librarian will show you an index to use. In this case, probably an index that focuses on psychology. The best one is PsycInfo. To get there, you go to the library’s home page and click on Article Indexes and Databases in the center of the page. You would not use QuickSearch, because you want to use journal articles, and PsycInfo will give you better, more focused articles than Quicksearch. Click on P at the bottom of the page, and then PsycInfo. When you do, you’ll see this page:

psychinfoopeningThis is when you want to remember Boolean searching from the last chapter. You don’t want articles on just children or just PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder. So you will use a search statement like you see in this search box:

searchboxpsychNow, you need to use scholarly articles. Let me give you a little hint: scholarly articles are the same thing as peer reviewed articles. You can see right under the search box a box you can click on for Peer reviewed. Click on that, you will get records for the kind of articles you want. You retrieve over 3000 records! Wow! You might want to narrow down your list by clicking on one of the limiters on the right side of the page:

limitingYou can see that we’ve already narrowed source type to scholarly journals. We can also limit to English language and to a particular date range (2000-2013). We might also want to limit by population, in this case childhood (birth – 12 years)

When we place all those limits on our search, we end up with just over 1,000 records. That’s still a lot, but let’s look at a couple of these records to see if we are getting what we want. See a couple of the records below:

resultsThe first article looks like it might work, but as to the second, we’re not really interested in Kurdistanian children and their parents in homeland and exile. We can either click on the linked article itself, or on the link at the bottom of the record—Citation/Abstract. When we do, we see:

recordIf we click on the subjects Child psychopathology and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, we will narrow our search down even more. Subject headings or descriptors are not the same as keywords. Subject headings are assigned by the database creator and are very specific to the database. Also, because they have been assigned to the record, you can bet that they are going to be found only in those articles whose contents are mainly about the subject.

See the Get it@ISU button circled in red? Sometimes you will see a record like the one below:

full textIn this case, you can get the full text (or PDF) straight from the database. But the record above this one does not indicate that you can get full-text PDF. However, if you click on the Get it@ISU button, our system will search all our databases to see if we have that record online from another database.

We don’t have every article that can be found in PsycInfo, online or in print. If we don’t, Interlibrary Loan is a quick way to get the article.

Remember: Periodical indexes’ main purpose is to help you find citations to articles on your subject.

2. Sometimes you find a citation in the list of references in a book or at the end of a scholarly article, and you’re not sure whether the citation is to a book, an article, or a book chapter.

For a book the citation should always have:

  • Book author
  • Book title
  • Place where the book was published
  • Publisher
  • Date of publication

These parts may be in a different order, but they are always there.

  • Article author
  • Article title
  • Journal title
  • Volume and issue
  • Date
  • Page numbers

Again, these might be in a different order, but they should all be there (except in the case of issue; some citations may have a volume number without an issue number.

A book chapter looks a little different, but has:

  • Chapter author
  • Chapter title
  • The word “In
  • The book author or editor
  • The book title
  • Place of publication of the book
  • Publisher of the book
  • Date
  • Page numbers for the chapter within the book.

Let’s see if you can identify whether the following are books, articles, or book chapters:

a. Samuel S. Green. “Personal relations between librarians and readers.” Library Journal, vol. 1 (Oct. 1876): 74-81.

b. Becker, Howard Saul, Blanche Geer, ad Everett C. Hughes. 1968. Making the grade: the academic side of college life. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

c. Kvivik, Robert B. 2005. Convenience, communications, and control: How students use technology. In Educating the net generation, edited by Diana G. Oblinger and James L. Oblinger. Boulder, CO: EDUCAUSE, 86-113.

d. Toffler, Alvin. 1970. Future shock. New York: Random House.

e. Suchman, Luch A., and Randall H. Trigg. “Understanding practice: Video as a medium for reflection and design.” In Design at work: cooperative design of computer systems, ed. Joan Greenbaum and Morten Kyng, 65-89. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1950.

f. Wagner, Cynthia. “Blabbing on your blog.” Futurist, 40:4 (2006): 7-9.

, Nick. Tomorrow never knows: Rock and psychedelics in the 1960s. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000.

>Dore. “Response to crisis in American art.” Art in America 57 (1969): 24-35.

i. Hoffman, Abbie, and Jerry Rubin. “Yippie Manifesto.” In Takin’ it to the streets: a sixties reader, ed. Alexander Bloom and Wini Breines, 323-4. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

>Alcalay, Amiel. “Memory/imagination/resistance.” South Atlantic Quarterly, 102, no. 4 (2003): 851-9.

k. Curtis, Michael, and Mordecai S. Chertoff, eds. Israel: Social structure and change. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Books, 1973.

l. Crane, R.S. “A neglected mid-eighteenth century plea for originality and its author,” in Evidence for authorship: Essays on problems of attribution. Edited by David V. Erdman and Ephim G. Vogel. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1966, 273-282.

m. Wheatley, Jack. April, 1986. “The use of case studies in the science classroom.” Journal of College Science Teaching, 15: 428-31.

3. To find out if the library has the above items, what search terms would you use and what option in the third drop-down box on QuickSearch?

4. You want to find out about college athletes and their academic achievement. You go to ERIC which is the best education index, and you find many articles. You would like to refine your search by using the ERIC subject headings. When you click on the record, this is what you find:

descriptorsWhat are the subject headings you can use (remember in periodical indexes, subject headings are sometimes called descriptors)?

5. You want to find some articles on United States protest to the Vietnam War. You go to the database America: History and Life, because that is the best index to use for American history. You find an article, but would like to use the designated subject headings to maybe narrow down your search. You click on what looks like a good article, and you see the following:


What are the subject headings you can use?

6. You are doing research on the effect of stress on children’s memories. Your instructor told you about an article on the subject that would probably be valuable. You have the title of the article, but nothing else. Go to QuickSearch and type in: maltreated children’s memory: accuracy, suggestibility and psychopathology. In the first drop-down menu choose Article and in the third choose Title. Click on the title of the article and see if you can find it in full text. What are your options for downloading this article?


Answers to question 2: What information have you got?

a. Author, Title, Title, Volume #, Date, Pages = Journal article.

The first title is the article title, the second, in italics, is the title of the journal.

b. Editors (authors), Date, Title (in italics), Place of publication, Publisher. = Book.

c. Author, Date, Title, “In”, Title, Editor, Place of publication, Publisher, Pages. = Chapter in a book.

The first author is the author of the chapter; the first title is the title of the chapter. “In” is always a dead give-away that you’re looking at a book chapter.

d. Author, Date, Title, Place of publication, Publisher. = Book

e. Authors, Title, “In,” Title, Editor, Pages, Place of publication, Publisher, Date. = Chapter in a book. Remember the “In.”

f. Author, Title, Title (in italics), Volume and Issue, Date, Pages. = Journal article

g. Author, Title, Place of publication, Publisher, Date. = Book

h. Author, Title, Title (in italics), Volume, Date, Pages. = Journal article

i. Authors, Title, “In,” Title, Editors, Pages, Place of publication, Publisher, Date. = Chapter in a book.

j. Author, Title, Title, Volume and issue, Date, Pages. = Journal article

k. Authors, Title, Place of publication, Publisher, Date. = Book

l. Author, Title, “In,” Title, Editors, Place of publication, Publisher, Date. = Book chapter.

m.  Author, Date, Title, Title, Volume #, Pages. = Journal article.


Answers to question 3:

a. In this one you’re looking for an article in a journal. Your best option would be to use Journals in the first drop-down box and In the title for the third drop down box. This is very important. To find out if we have the article, you need to find out if we actually have the journal the article is in. So you would type in the terms Library journal and search QuickSearch for the title of the journal.

If you click on the tab that says Locations/Request item, you see that the library has from volume 1 (which is the one you’re looking for) and the dash after 1876 means we are still receiving this journal. So you would need to find the journal, and then find the article within the journal.

b. Becker, howard as Author or
Making the grade: the academic side of college life as Title

c. Here you are looking for a chapter in the book, so you need to find the actual book that chapter is in.

Oblinger, Diana as Author or
Educating the net generation as Title.

You would NOT look for the author or title of the chapter.

d. Toffler Alvin as Author or
Future shock as Title

e. Again, you have a chapter in a book, so you need to find the book.

Greenbaum joan as Author or
Greenbaum and kyng as Author or
Design at work: cooperative design of computer systems as Title

f. Journal in 1st drop-down box, then Futurist in search box and Title in the 3rd drop-down box

g. Bromell nick as Author or
Tomorrow never knows: rock and psychedelics in the 1960s as Title

h. Journal in 1st drop-down box, then art in america in search box and Title in the 3rd drop-down box

i. bloom alexander as Author or
bloom and breines as Author or
takin’ it to the streets: a sixties reader as Title

j. Journal in 1st drop-down box, then south atlantic quarterly in search box and Title in the 3rd drop-down box

k. Curtis Michael as Author or
Curtis and cherthoff as Author or
Israel: social structure and change as Title

l. erdman david as Author or
erdman and vogel as Author or
Evidence for authorship: Essays on problems of attribution as Title

m. Journal in 1st drop-down box, then journal of college science teaching in search box and Title in the 3rd drop-down box

Answer to question 4:

  • Grade point average
  • Academic achievement
  • Athletes
  • Motivation
  • Factor analysis
  • Correlation
  • College students
  • Statistical analysis
  • Higher education
  • Data analysis
  • Comparative analysis
  • Whites
  • Males
  • Surveys
  • Investigations
  • Universities
  • Educational psychology

Answer to question 5:

  • Peace movements
  • Social movements
  • Demonstrations (collective behavior)
  • War
  • Protest movements
  • Vietnam War 1961-1975
  • Practical politics
  • Values

Answer to question 6:

If you look at the top right-hand side of the first page of the article, you have two options: Full text html and Full text PDF. You can use either of these options to download and save the article. In some cases, those options may show up in a different place: on the top left, on the left or right halfway down the page, at the end of the article. And you don’t always have a choice. In many cases you can only download an article in PDF. So look for these options when you find an article online that you want to save or print.


Chapter 1 Tutorials

Following are links to tutorials from other libraries that address some of the ideas in Chapter 1.

  • Assignment Calculator
    From San Jose State University, this interactive page lets you enter the due date for an assignment and then gives you particular dates for the different stages of your research. A great time-management tool.

  • How do I?
    This tutorial from the University of Washington offers information on the basics of research with some online quizzes included.

  • The Information Cycle
    A description of how the information cycle relates to the production of different types of materials (the internet, newspapers, magazines, journals, and books) based on the Columbine school shootings in Littleton, CO. This event may be a little before your time, but consider the information in light of 9/11 or the killings at the Boston Marathon in April 2013.

  • The Information Cycle
    Another explanation of the information cycle from the University of Washington, focused on the Japanese tsunami of 2011.

  • One Perfect Source?
    Doing research isn’t about finding one article that covers your topic perfectly.

  • Picking Your Topic IS Research
    Understanding the iterative process of the research process. Very well done.

  • Tutorial For Information Power (TIP)
    From the University of Wyoming

Chapter 1 Take-aways

From De Montfort University Library, Leicester, UK (


When you are first starting to think about your topic for an assignment, there are issues about it that you need to consider BEFORE starting to do any research.

The first of these is WHEN the event you are writing about occurred. The time of the event will determine what kinds of information resources might be available to you. For instance, if you are doing a project on the election primaries, because they are happening now, you probably won’t find many journal articles on this topic, unless you are looking for general information on election primaries in general. Nor, probably, will you find books. It takes time to publish both books and scholarly journal articles, and the recent U.S. election primaries are too recent. You can probably find magazine, newspapers, and web sites that discuss this particular subject.


So when an event occurred is going to be very influential in determining what kinds of information you will find.

If you know nothing about a topic you are beginning to research, encyclopedias can be useful. In this particular case, probably Wikipedia is a good place to start.


Chapter 2 mentions 3 major consideration to help you get started in your research.   The chart below identifies those three:



Finding Tools

What are the three major finding tools for your research, according to Chapter 1:

  • Library discovery tools (in our library–QuickSearch)–books, videos, sometimes websites
  • Periodical indexes–journal article
  • Web search engines–journal articles, videos, websites

These are the tools you use to find the appropriate information sources, such as books, journal articles, videos, newspaper articles, and web sites that might be appropriate for your research project.

Types of Information Sources

Chapter 1 illustrates the types of information sources used for different types of information you need:

    • Library discovery tools

      • Background  information

      • Statistics

    • Periodical indexes

      • Statistics

      • News and general information

      • Scholarly, peer-reviewed journal articles

    • Web search engines

      • Background information

      • Statistics

      • News & general information

      • Governmental sources

      • Other likely organizations, agencies


Choose your search terms carefully:

  • To get better, more relevant results
  • To help focus your search
  • To determine whether you’d be better off using a scholarly index with controlled  vocabulary
  • To use the correct controlled vocabulary for the different scholarly indexes