This guide is designed to orient you to resources and services available through ZSR Library that will enable you to be successful in Dr. Gurstelle's FYS course. If you have any questions about the resources provided in this guide, please let one of us know! Email me or click on the "Meet with Me" button in my profile to set up a personal research session.
Encyclopedias, Handbooks, & Reference Works
Subject specific encyclopedias and handbooks are a good starting point for researching a topic. The articles or chapters contained within are typically written by scholars or experts in the field. Using them at the beginning of one's research can help in determining key terms to use in searching the library's catalog and databases. A bibliography containing citations for books and/or journal articles can often be found at the end of articles or chapters in subject specific encyclopedias and handbooks, and these citations can be used to identify other sources on one's topic.
Use Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) to narrow or broaden your search and to exclude terms in your search.
Truncation - Use the * (asterisk symbol) to search for variations of the root of a word (e.g. wom* - will retrieve search results with woman, women, womanly, womanhood)
Exact phrase - Use quotation marks around a phrase to retrieve results that include the exact phrase (e.g. "Nazca lines" or "Kennewick Man".
Use the built-in database filters to limit your search results! - Most interfaces let you limit by publication date, subject, format and more. These features will help you hone your search strategy to find the most relevant sources!