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ZSR Library

POL 280: Research Methods in Politics and International Affairs: Getting Started


This research guide is designed for students doing research for Research Methods classes. If you run into any problems, or need more assistance, don't hesitate to use the calendar to request a personal research session. If you cannot find a time when I am available, feel free to find a time on one of the other social science librarians' calendars

Search Tips for Politics

Good searching can shorten your research time significantly. Here are my top five tips for Politics researchers:

  • When researching people (or two word countries), put the name in quotes "Nelson Mandela" or "South Africa"
  • When researching countries, truncate: 'Mexic*' will find items that have 'Mexico' AND ones with 'Mexican'.
  • Be specific: A search for 'female suicide bombers.' is much better  than one for 'terrorist methods.'
  • Use the various ways of limiting a search that appear on your results screen - most interfaces let you limit by publication date, subject, format and more. Use these to narrow your results list as much as possible.
  • Finally, ZSR Librarians are very skilled in helping you find the best search for your topic - just request a meeting!

Research Process Resources

Research Process Resources
Choosing a Method Resources
Literature Review Resources
Annotated Bibliography Resources

Scholarly Journal Databases in Political Science (and related disciplines)

The databases below are the ones most frequently used by students doing political science research. The list starts with the politics-specific databases but also lists the many databases we have in related disciplines that often contain relevant sources. Politics is a very interdisciplinary thing, so looking at other databases is often very useful! 

Databases for General International Politics and Government 

Databases for International Military and Security Issues

Databases for International Policy and Issues 

Rosalind Tedford

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Rosalind Tedford
ZSR Library
Room 457A
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