Social Work 206
Society, Poverty, and Social Welfare Policy
Library Instruction Program - Research
and Instructional Support
For more information about this topic contact Linda Kopecky
Table of Contents
- Tips and Strategies for Research
- Library Research Assistance
- Finding Information on Social Welfare issues
- The New York Times
You probably know that a library catalog is used to find books. You may also know that unlike Google which searches the WWW, library databases search publications like magazines and journals. The full list of databases available at UWM is found at Resources A-Z. You can also use the Subject Guides to help you select a database using a general subject like “Literature” or “Sociology” to start you out. Meta Search will also allow you to search several databases for the same topic simultaneously. This guide includes some suggestions for databases that will help you find information on topics related to your course.
Constructing a Search
- Write down research question and underline key concepts
- Think of synonyms and alternate terms for each of the main concepts
- Think broader, or narrower, depending on results of initial searches
- Consult a thesaurus or index, if available, to narrow and focus the search
For example if you want to find articles on this: Increased deportation of illegal immigrants due to changing work requirements.
Your search will look like this:
"illegal immigrants" and deportation and work
"illegal immigrants" and labor
illegal and laborers and legislation
Which to use: Catalog or Database?
- Use a library catalog to locate books and documents in a library's collections. It will also say if the library owns specific journals. PantherCat, MadCat, and MarqCat are examples of library catalogs
- A database, on the other hand, indexes the journals and is used to point to specific articles within the journals, articles on a topic or by a particular author. The full text of some, but not all, of these articles may be available online. Social Services Abstracts, Sociological Abstracts are databases used for research in the Social Sciences.
- Catalogs and databases do different things but work hand in hand to provide resources. Use one or more databases to find references to articles, then a library catalog to see if a library owns the journal where the article is published.
- Find It! is a helpful tool for locating electronic or print copies of articles available at the UWM LIbraries.
This link allows UWM students, faculty, and staff with Internet access to connect to most of the Libraries' subscription databases and electronic journals from home (a few titles are licensed for on-campus or in-library use only).
An email and chat service, AskaLibrarian provides a forum for questions at all hours. Check this web page for the various formats.
E-reserve materials generally consist of scanned journal articles, book chapters, lecture notes, and sample exams. These printable materials may be accessed from off-campus computers using the proxy server [see above].
When materials cannot be found at the UWM Libraries, use this link to pursue the many options available.
This is an in-depth advisory service about specific library research processes offered by librarians of the RIS Department to the students, staff and faculty of UWM. Use this link to find out more or to request an appointment.
In addition to your course readings and discussions you may wish to look at some additional sources that can help you learn more about a topic you are exploring. Visit the reference room of the UWM Libraries, or try out this tool called CQ Researcher. CQ Researcher is a database dedicated solely to the CQ Researcher publication. Each issue of CQ is about the length of a news magazine, but it only covers one topic in-depth. CQ is useful for getting a very quick, brief snapshot of the history of an issue and ideas for further exploration. See the bibliography section for some “hand-picked” links to more information.
See Illegal Immigrants, Grang Crisis, American Indians
Truncation symbol is ? For example work? searches work, works, working, worked...
Types of searches include, title, author, keyword (and, or not). Use this guide for more tips in searching PantherCat.
Sample Search [using Keywords (and, or, not)]: "social condition?" and homicide?
On the UWM Libraries home page under "Find Articles", the Resources A-Z link leads to an alphabetical list of databases. Some index journals, magazines and newspapers from various subject disciplines. Others are collections containing the electronic full text of such journals. The ones listed below index articles related to your course topic Society, Poverty, and Social Welfare Policy. They each have online guides. Also see the full guide for Sociology and Social Work.
Academic Search 1984-present; indexes over 3,400 scholarly journals, magazines, and newspapers in the areas of business, social sciences, humanities, general academic, general science, education, and multi-cultural studies. Full-text is available for 2,000 journals starting with January 1985. Guide Ethnic NewsWatch 1990-present; a full-text comprehensive collection of over 250 newspapers, magazines and journals of the ethnic and minority press. Guide GenderWatch - Tutorial 1970-present; full-text collection of international journals, magazines, newsletters, regional publications, special reports and conference proceedings devoted to women's and gender issues. Guide Social Sciences Full Text 1983-present; indexes more than 600 international, English-language periodicals in sociology, anthropology, geography, economics, political science, and law. Full-text is available for 169 journals starting with January 1995. Guide Social Services Abstracts 1980-present; citations and abstracts to current research focused on social work, human services, and related areas, including social welfare, social policy, and community development. Covers over 1,500 serial publications. Guide Sociological Abstracts 1963-present; provides citations and abstracts to journal articles, conference papers, books and dissertations in the field of sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences. It covers over 1,700 publications, and is updated monthly. Guide
The New York Times
The New York Times is considered the newspaper of record in the United States. It does not have the highest circulation (or sales), but it has a reputation for editorial excellence, full reporting, and excellent coverage of international news. It has established this authority over a 150 year publishing history, notably its coverage of the World Wars. By reviewing a list headlines from The New York Times one can learn a lot about an historical event or date. One could analyze changing attitudes, trends, social phenomenon, etc. just by reviewing the development of this issue as it appeared in The New York Times over several weeks or several decades. As the newspaper of record, The New York Times is an important primary source in historical studies. It is also an example of a source that has established authority among its readers and provides an excellent standard for comparison with popular news sources.
In addition to the current content available on The New York Times website (http://www.nyt.com), the New York Times is available in the UWM Libraries in several different formats.
Print—Housed in the Current Periodicals room with the current newspapers. Current issues arrive daily and they are kept only until the Microfilm arrives for the previous month.
Microfilm – Shelved in the Current Periodicals room under the call number MF AN 02.
Online—1857-- three years ago in Proquest Historical Newspapers. 1980--date in Proquest Newspapers.
Indexing The New York Times Index (find articles on a topic, by author, etc.)
Shelved in Compact Shelving West with the call number AI 21 .N44
Historical Information taken from New York Times, The. (2007). In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved August 29, 2007, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online: http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9373417