POLI SCI 190: Political Science Honors Seminar

Contact Your Librarian

  • Susan Edwards
  • Office Hours: By appointment
  • Office Location: Education Psychology Library, 2600 Tolman Hall
  • Contact Info:

    510-643-6224

About this Guide

This guide contains links and resources that will assist in researching and writing a Political Science thesis.

This guide has been archived

Please note: this course guide was created during a previous semester, and is no longer being actively maintained. For a list of current course guides, please see http://lib.berkeley.edu/alacarte/course-guides. 

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Campus Library Map

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Citation Linker

Have a citation? Use Citation Linker to go directly to the article.

Get immediate access to journal articles, books and other publications (or request them when they are not available) by entering a title and other citation information.

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Connecting from Off Campus?

You can access UCB Library resources from off campus or via your laptop or other mobile device using one of two simple methods:

Proxy Server
After you make a one-time change in your web browser settings, the proxy server will ask you to log in with a CalNet ID or Library PIN when you click on the link to a licensed resource. See the setup instructions, FAQ, and Troubleshooting pages to configure your browser.

VPN (Virtual Private Network)
After you install and run the VPN "client" software on your computer, you can log in with a CalNet ID to establish a secure connection with the campus network.

Find eBooks

The Library offers over 100 e-book and e-text collections in specific subject areas. E-books in collections marked * are also available through OskiCat and Melvyl. You can limit your search in OskiCat to "Available online," and in Melvyl to "Online resources."

Find Books, Journal Titles, and More

Use OskiCat or Melvyl to Find books or Journal Titles (not articles) to see if UCB or UC has the journal. If UCB does not have it, you can request the book/article though the request feature in Melvyl.  Allow 1 week+ for the item not at UCB to be available for pickup.

Google Books

Why use Google Books? Library catalogs (like OskiCat) don't search inside books; using a library catalog, you can search only information about the book (title, author, Library of Congress subject headings, etc.).  Google Books will let you search inside books, which can be very useful for hard-to-find information.  You can then use Google Books' Find in a Library link to locate the book in a UC Berkeley library, or search OskiCat to see if UC Berkeley owns the book.Try it now:

Google Book Search

Find Dissertations

Find Dissertations by searching Digital Dissertations, which indexes over 1.5 million dissertations completed in North America (including UC) and European universities from 1861 to the present. Listings after 1980 include abstracts, and some feature 24-page excerpts. 

Full-text Access: Online full-text of UC dissertations (from 1996) can be found by searching Digital Dissertations and also appear in Library catalog search results. UC Berkeley dissertations in print prior to 1996 may be found by searching the Library catalogs. Dissertations done at other UC campuses prior to 1996 or ouside the UC system must be obtained through Interlibrary Loan or using the "Request" option in Melvyl.

You may also limit a search in OskiCat to dissertations by changing the drop down from "Entire Collection" to "Dissertations/Theses":

Dissertations/Theses in Oskicat

 

Political Science Databases

Core article databases for political science research are below. 

Off-campus Access to Library Resources

Before you can access Library resources from off campus make sure you have configured your computer with proxy server settings.

After you make a one-time change in your web browser settings, the proxy server will ask you to log in with a CalNet ID or Library PIN when you click on the link to a licensed resource.

Related Databases

The Berkeley Library provides access to hundreds of databases, below are some that might be particularly helpful.

UC-eLinks

Once you've searched a database to find articles, you may need to use UC-eLinks orange logo to link to a PDF or html file if the full text is not immediately available. Each database isa bit different, but a good rule of thumb is this: when you see the Uc-eLinks icon click on it to view your article access options, which can range from full text to a call number to an Interlibrary Loan request:

UC e-Links image

For more information, here's a tutorial on using UC-eLinks.

Citation Linker

Have a citation? Use Citation Linker to go directly to the article.

Get immediate access to journal articles, books and other publications (or request them when they are not available) by entering a title and other citation information.

Read more

Finding Citations From an Article or Book

If you have an academic/scholarly book or article and what to see want has cited it, you can.  Use Social Sciences Citation Linker (Web of Knowledge) to find how many times something has been cited.  This can also lead you to other resources for your research projects.

Amazon.com can also help you find which books have cited a book you know about.  Scroll down to the bottom of an amazon book page to find the books.  Do not buy the books from Amazon, instead use OskiCat or Melvyl to locate and borrow the book.

How many times an article/book has been cited is also one way to judge it's impact, though keep in mind that a good article/book can be praised as many times as a bad one can be ridiculed. 

Gov Info

These resouces can help you discover and locate information from the government.  More resources can be located in the Library's Government Information pages.

Data and Statistics

These links will guide you to various sources for statistics and data.  If you are interested in manipulating a dataset on your own, please visit the Doe Library's Data Lab in 189 Doe.

News Resources

Here are some general news and newsmedia databases.  For a full listing of the Library's news resources, check this list.

Foreign Broadcast Information Service

The Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) can provide you a wealth of information from foreign news sources.  The U.S. State Department ran the FBIS to translate foreign language newspapers, wires, and broadcasts into English.  FBIS only translated information relating to U.S. interests, and only distributed to the public a select amount of what was translated.

At UC Berkeley, we have 3 databases for locating FBIS documents:

FBIS Daily Reports (covers 1941-1996, and is full text--Click on the tab "Events" to find news on major world events)

World News Connection (covers 1996-2013, and is full-text, but is not being updated)

FBIS Electronic Index (covers 1975-1996 and is only citations-- though all will be in the FBIS Daily reports database above, use the instructions below for finding the documents "old school" style)

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Google Search Tips, Tricks and Hacks

One of the largest hurdles of using Google is the amount you must weed through.  Some searches result in thousands of pages; who has time to go through all that?  You dont need to.  Did you know you can manipulate a regular Google search with a couple hacks to your search.  Its true!  Try these search "tricks" during your next google search.

You can also combine some of these search hacks, such as adding -site:nytimes.com to remove results from the New York Times website.  More search tricks can be found here.

Google Books

Why use Google Books? Library catalogs (like OskiCat) don't search inside books; using a library catalog, you can search only information about the book (title, author, Library of Congress subject headings, etc.).  Google Books will let you search inside books, which can be very useful for hard-to-find information.  You can then use Google Books' Find in a Library link to locate the book in a UC Berkeley library, or search OskiCat to see if UC Berkeley owns the book.Try it now:

Google Book Search

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is an easy way to do interdisciplinary research, and with some settings changes can become even more useful.  You need a Google account to use these features.

Do your search in Google Scholar. Look in the green toolbar for the envelope icon, and click it.  New items will be sent to your email account as they are found by Google.

Open Scholar.  Click on scholar preferences [next to the search box]. Under Library Links, enter the word Berkeley.  Choose up to three database providers we subscribe to: Full Text@IngentaConnect; UC eLinks; and Read article via OCLC.

Do a Google Scholar search. Click on the "Cited by" link under a citation and select the "Search within articles citing..." checkbox.

Citation Management Tools

Citation management tools help you manage your research, collect and cite sources, and create bibliographies in a variety of citation styles.  Each one has its strengths and weaknesses, but any are easier than doing it by hand!

  1. Zotero: A free plug-in that works exclusively with the Firefox browser: keeps copies of what you find on the web, permits tagging, notation, full text searching of your library of resources, works with Word, and has a free web backup service.
  2. RefWorks - free for UC Berkeley users. It allows you to create your own database by importing references and using them for footnotes and bibliographies. Use the RefWorks New User Form to sign up.
  3. EndNote: may be purchased from UC Berkeley's Software Central.

It's always good to double check the formatting -- sometimes the software doesn't get it quite right.

Why Cite?

"Ethics, copyright laws, and courtesy to readers require authors to identify the sources of direct quotations and of any facts or opinions not generally known or easily checked."--
Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition (Chicago: Chicago Univ. Press), p. 594

Why cite sources?
Whenever you quote or base your ideas on another person's work, you must document the source you used. Even when you do not quote directly from another work, if reading that source contributed to the ideas presented in your paper, you must give the authors proper credit.

Citations allow readers to locate and further explore the sources you consulted, show the depth and scope of your research, and give credit to authors for their ideas. Citations provide evidence for your arguments and add credibility to your work by demonstrating that you have sought out and considered a variety of resources. In written academic work, citing sources is standard practice and shows that you are responding to this person, agreeing with that person, and adding something of your own. Think of documenting your sources as providing a trail for your reader to follow to see the research you performed and discover what led you to your original contribution.

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Plagerism

What is plagiarism?

Plagiarism is a form of academic dishonesty, violating the Berkeley Campus Code of Student Conduct. The campus issues a guide to understanding plagiarism, which states:

"Plagiarism means using another's work without giving credit. You must put others' words in quotation marks and cite your source(s). Citation must also be given when using others' ideas, even when those ideas are paraphrased into your own words."

Plagiarism is a serious violation of academic and student conduct rules and is punishable with a failing grade and possibly more severe action. For more information, consult the following UC Berkeley websites:

How Do I Make an Appointment?

Thesis research and writing can very specific and a single library session may not provide you with all the information you need.  You are more than welcome to contact the Political Science Librarian, Susan Edwards, via email or phone (email is preferred) to ask a question, set up an appointment, or get more help with anything related to the Library and research.  Contact info is below:

Email: sedwards@library.berkeley.edu
Phone: 510-643-6224

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Research Advisory Service

Research Advisory Service for Cal Undergraduates

Book a 30-minute appointment with a librarian who will help refine and focus research inquiries, identify useful online and print sources, and develop search strategies for humanities and social sciences topics.

Schedule, view, edit or cancel your appointment online (CalNetID required)

This service is for Cal undergraduates only. Graduate students and faculty should contact the library liaison to their department or program for specialized reference consultations.

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