IAS 102: sample course guide

About this Guide

Guide to library research for sample course guide Professor Schmerz, spring 1999

This guide has been archived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.

History databases

Three important databases for research in History.

Specialized Databases

History of Science Secondary Source

Isis Current Bibliography ("Isis CB")
   * Updated annually in the journal Isis.
   * Entire bibliography available for free via WorldCat (www.worldcat.org). Just include "xisi2" in your search terms (e.g., "eugenics xisi2").
   * Searchable for a fee through the HSTM database (see below)
   * Excellent selection of published monographs, articles, and other sources in the history of science, technology, and medicine (most content related to science).
HSTM ("HistSciTecMed") Database
   * Powerful search front-end for the following bibliographies: Isis CB (1974-present), Italian Bibliography of the History of Science (1982-present), Current Bibliography in the History of Technology (1987-present), and the Wellcome Library for the History and Understanding of Medicine (1991-2004).
   * Moderate learning curve. Effective searching requires learning HSTM's thesaurus of subjects and terms. For more information, see "Isis Currently Bibliography in the History of Science" at http://www.ou.edu/cas/hsci/isis/website/ and Weldon et. al., and "Searching Smartly in the HistSciTechMed Database" at http://www.hssonline.org/publications/Newsletter2010/April-searching-smartly.html.

Historical newspapers

Early Modern Europe Databases

These databases include primary sources.

19th Century Primary Source Collections

Pre-1877 US publications

Early American Imprints is a major digital collection of American publications, 1639-1800.  You can search by subject words, or browse by genre, subject, author, place of publication, or language.

American State Papers A collection of more than 6,000 government publications including congressional and Executive Department materials. These papers cover the following broad subject areas: foreign relations, Indian affairs, commerce and navigation, military and naval affairs, the post-office department, and more.

American Periodical Series Online Contains digitized images of more than 1,100 periodicals. Includes special interest and general magazines, literary and professional journals, children's and women's magazines and many other historically significant magazines.

Harper's Weekly [aka Harpweek] Full-image reproductions of Harper's Weekly from its beginning in 1857 to 1912. Provides access to information about 19th and early 20th century advertising, illustrations, culture, history, literature, and notable figures.

Historical Annual Reports [of US businesses]

Of course, the library itself is full of pre-1877 US publications that you can find in Oskicat.

History of Science Primary Sources

Internet History of Science Sourcebook http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/science/sciencesbook.html. The Sourcebook lists digital collections categorized from Antiquity to the present. It also includes non-western sources.
You can also find primary sources on museum websites, such as the Oxford Museum of the History of Science http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/ (Click "Online Exhibits"); the Smithsonian Institution's Educators page http://www.si.edu/Educators; and Library of Congress "Lesson Plans for Science Teachers" http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/themes/science/lessonplans.html.

Finding Primary Sources overview

Primary sources can be found in a variety of library tools:

For specific search strategies, see the Library's Guide to Finding Historical Primary Sources


To find books, DVDs, maps, sound recordings, manuscripts, and much more - everything except articles - use a library catalog.

OskiCat = UC Berkeley libraries

MELVYL= all UC campus libraries, including all UC Berkeley libraries

What's the difference?

For each item make sure you know the name of the physical library, call number, and whether or not it's checked out, library use only, etc.

Getting Material from NRLF

A large part of the library's collection is stored off campus in an environmentally secure building called the Northern Regional Library Facility [NRLF].

Submit online requests via the REQUEST button in OskiCat to borrow material shelved at NRLF. To receive electronic or paper copies of book chapters or journal articles, submit an online request via the "Request an article from NRLF (photocopy or web delivery)" link that appears in eligible titles in OskiCat. Staff at public service desks of any campus library can assist you with further questions. 

nrlf request button in oskicat

Log in to Request with your Calnet ID and fill out the screens.  Choose the volume you want, for periodicals:

nrlf request item selection

Oskicat journal search

Suppose you know the name of the journal, newspaper or magazine you want.  Does Berkeley own it?  Search Oskicat to find out.

Where's That Book?

PT9876.22.A6933 L8413 2010 

What is this number?

It's called a 'call number', and every book in the library has a unique one, which is printed on the spine of the book.

The call numbers tell you where the book is shelved, if you know how to read them.

call numbers

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 in your browser to keeps copies of pdfs and other research materials 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.  Formats your bibliography and footnotes in many style sheets.
  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.

Using APA 6th? Purdue has produced this very handy quick guide. The fulltext of APA 6th is not available online, but we do have print copies in the EdPsych Library in reference and short term reserve at BF76.7 P83 2010

Formatting Citations

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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 (examples of research 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.

Reference Desks Help

"There are no dumb questions!" 

That's the philosophy of reference librarians, who are here to save you time and trouble. If you get stuck, you can talk to a reference librarian at any campus library

reference librarian

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