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Literature Searching or What to do when you don’t have a reading list BSc Sociology This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike.

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Presentation on theme: "Literature Searching or What to do when you don’t have a reading list BSc Sociology This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike."— Presentation transcript:

1 Literature Searching or What to do when you don’t have a reading list BSc Sociology This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 License.Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 License

2 Overview Planning your research Not just Google searching Electronic Journals Cross Searcher Search tips EBSCO databases e.g. IBSS (International Bibliography of the Social Sciences) Other databases Further Help

3 Planning a search © Netskills Quality Internet Training, University of Newcastle

4 Plan your research: What type of information do you need? Journal articles, books, Government reports? Background reading or Primary sources? Very recent material or Historical? English language? UK or International? Academic or Populist/Commercial? Statistical Data? Our Data Librarian can help Not ‘pure sociology’? Archives? Interviews/surveys? How do you identify information? Can you access the required information? Timescales

5 Search terms Analyse your dissertation topic – what are the key concepts? Define keywords List any synonyms ‘The effects of television violence on children’ Television/tv/adverts/dvd etc Violence/aggression Children/teenagers/youth Parental control? Peer pressure? Crime? Psychological?

6 Electronic Journals Library Catalogue lists both print AND online journals Journals portal for electronic only Search by journal title, by keyword in a journal title, by subject grouping or specific publisher group Some titles may be available via more than one service, depending on the year required. Content can be restricted to particular years Use the portal to search for words in the title of the journal, but not of the individual articles Publishers may only list their own titles not those of rival publishers so you could miss key information

7 Won’t Google give me everything? Much medical & scientific information is freely available but other areas lag behind There is no quality standards or peer review Information can be moved or removed without warning Information can be wrong, out of date and biased Information overload can soon occur Doesn’t show the whole picture of books and journals Can point to commercial versions of databases you can’t use-but we have access to them via LSE Won’t include information from databases such as IBSS »»»»» You may be missing out on crucial information

8 Google Scholar Searches scholarly papers Material more likely to be good quality Not as full as subscription databases Advanced search options not as complex as subscription databases Frustrating as may link to articles requiring a subscription No resource list so you don’t know what’s included-only certain publishers are available »»»You still may be missing out on crucial information

9 Cross Searcher Requires LSE username & Password Searches up to 50 databases simultaneously Helps identify key databases, journals, authors Simple search works best-then use options to refine Not everything is available due to publisher restrictions Need complex searches or citation searching-use databases individually Access individual databases via library catalogue or Subject guides

10 Search tips for individual databases AND &, + – combines terms. Narrows results OR, – locates results containing either of the terms. Use ‘or’ for synonyms. Useful for US/UK Spellings. Broadens results NOT – excludes terms. Discards results that contain your excluded term (even if the results contain your chosen search term) Phrases – enclose in quotation marks “third way” Proximity – WITH, SAME – locates results in same sentence or paragraph Truncation – replaces multiple characters at the end of a word e.g. pension*– finds pensioner, pensions, pensioned Wild card – replaces a single character organi?ation – locates either spelling e.g. wom?n finds woman and women wom* finds both along with womb, wombat, womble etc. Check help pages for the correct symbol. Can be * ! + $ Subject headings & Thesauri e.g. MeSH

11 IBSS: International Bibliography of the Social Sciences Premium Social Sciences Index- references journal articles, books, chapters and book reviews. Links to full text articles via Article Finder Based at LSE so journals more likely to be in stock Good foreign language coverage Results can be imported into Endnote Searches can be saved to rerun at a later date Access: Catalogue or Subject pages Date range: 1951- Updated Weekly

12 ISI Citation Indices via the Web of Knowledge Science, Social Science & Arts and Humanities available Abstracts and references to journal articles and book reviews Links to full text articles via Article Finder Enables citation searching in addition to searching by keyword Results can be exported into Endnote Searches can be saved to rerun at a later date Also Available the ISI Conference Proceedings database for Science and Technology only Access: Cross Searcher, Catalogue

13 Newspaper articles Nexis UK UK National UK Local International Text only-no images Times Digital archive 1785-1985 Scanned newspapers Search by date, keyword, article type British Library Newspaper Library at Colindale UK National & Regional International Microfilm or CDROM-will contain images

14 Electronic Resources recap spx Cross Searcher-search several databases together Library Catalogue-look for individual names of databases Subject pages-access and further information Useful Free resources via Delicious Use resources to identify what has been published-not just what is at LSE Some databases are provided by the same publisher so you can do a mini cross search Use the Article Finder button to search for full text

15 Still undecided on your topic? Brainstorming: List all the keywords which could describe your topic Identify synonyms & alternative spellings Formulate a ‘research question’ Are they any key papers already published? Any key authors? Hot topic or dead duck? Run a quick search in Cross Searcher to scope material

16 Once you’ve found material- Keep track of it Note full information at point of use Nothing worse than trying to identify material months afterwards Note ALL details not just author/title Collect this information once and you will not need to do so again Note your search strategies so as to rerun at a later date Use the My Favourites option on the catalogue to store LSE titles Helps avoid plagiarism Consider using Endnote Use Delicious to keep track of web pages

17 Further Help Sociology Guide Bioscience & Health guide Workshops Students Companion & Researchers Companion in Moodle Students Companion Researchers Companion 1-2-1 or group sessions can be arranged

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