COLWRIT 4B: Public History, Personal Story

Questions? That's my job.

  • Lynn Jones


  • Office Hours: by appointment
  • Office Location: 212 Doe Library
  • Contact Info:

    510 768-7643

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.

Is it a scholarly source?

Your instructor wants you to use scholarly [or 'peer reviewed'] sources.  What does she mean?

Scholarship is always changing. Try to find the most recent scholarly sources you can.


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Using call numbers to find books

Books and journals are arranged on our shelves according to the Library of Congress (LC) classification system. Each is assigned a unique call number based on its subject matter and other characteristics. Items on the same subject will often be grouped together.

In using a call number to locate a book on the shelf, consider each element in turn before moving on to the next segment.

These call numbers are arranged as they should appear on the shelves. In each case, the element shown in boldface distinguishes the number from the preceding one:


Each call number consists of several elements. For example::


The FIRST line, TK, is based on the broad subject of the book. Within Class T for technology, TK represents electrical engineering.

The SECOND line, 7881.6, defines the subject matter more finely. When looking for the book, read this as a whole number with a decimal component. In this example, TK7881.6 represents magnetic recording (a subdivision of TK— electrical engineering).

The THIRD line, M29, usually indicates author, but may also represent a further subject subdivision, geographic area, etc. There may also be a fourth line, formatted the same way. When looking for the book, read the numeric component as if it were preceded by a decimal point. In the example above, the numeric part of M29 should be read as ".29" (and the call number TK7881.6 M29 comes before TK7881.6 M4).

The YEAR of publication, such as 1993, may also be present. These file in chronological order and often indicate successive editions of a book. The call number may also have additional elements, such as volume numbers.

Doe, Main Stacks, Moffitt Library floorplans

Looking for a location in Doe, Main Stacks or Moffitt?  Try the floorplans, or ask for assistance!

Library FAQs

More questions?  Our FAQs may help. 

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

Oral histories

Search this database by the historical event you are interested in.  There are many oral histories of the Holocaust.

Primary Sources Online - Overview

The texts of primary sources are available online in two different ways:

Comprehensive list of library databases of primary sources in US History

Selected list, US History

Historical newspaper and magazine articles US History

Selected list of library databases of primary sources in European history  Flag of the European Union

Historical newspaper and magazine articles, European history    Flag of the European Union

Primary Sources by country or continent     globe

Comprehensive list of library databases of primary sources worldwide.     globe


Times Digital Archive

Primary Source Searching - Names

One of the most powerful ways to find primary sources in the Library is to use the names of people.  An essential part of your background reading should be to note down names of people involved in your topics.

Names can be searched in the catalogs [Oskicat and Melvyl] in specialized ways: as authors or as subjects.  Even people you do not consider authors in the conventional sense may be listed as authors, if:

When searching for primary sources, it's a good idea always to search those names as authors, as well as keywords.  Works where the person is listed as an author will always be primary sources.

Searching OskiCat for Primary Sources

Certain words and phrases [part of the Library of Congress Subject Headings thesaurus] will find primary sources in library catalogs.  Note them down; they are your friends:

-personal narratives
-early works to 1800


puerto rican* interviews
african american soldiers personal narratives
irish american* newspapers

Catalogs and Google Scholar

Oskicat. UC Berkeley libraries catalog. Includes records for most UCB library materials, including books, e-books, journal and e-journal titles, films and videos, maps, archival materials, and much more. See also the Quick Guide to Oskicat and Oskicat Tutorial.

Melvyl. Catalog for all UC Campus libraries, including selected libraries on campus not in Oskicat, e.g. the Boalt Law Library. Why use Melvyl?  It includes thousands of scholarly journal articles and links to WorldCat, which gets you into the collections of libraries around the world

Google Scholar.  It automatically connects you via UC eLinks to articles and other content licenses by the UC libraries. 


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 left sidebar for the Create Alert link next to 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 the gear icon gear icon in the upper right corner, and choose 'scholar preferences'. In the next screen, choose Library Links from the left-hand menu. In the search box, type the word Berkeley.  Choose University of California, Berkeley - UC-eLinks, and Open Worldcat Search.

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

Navigating Article Search Results in ANY Database

Ask yourself these questions, in order, about any citation for an article you want. Stop when the answer is yes. Keep going if you answer no.

1. Is there a full-text link or PDF icon? YES: Fantastic! Click on it. Then read it, print it, or email it. Stop here. NO: Go to #2.

2. Do you see a gold UC-eLinks icon?

YES: Good! Click on it, and then go to #3. (If it automatically opens the article for you, then stop here. Now you can read it, or email it.) NO: Then you'll need to open a new tab or window and go to Do a title search for the title of the journal. Click on the journal title in the results and see if the volume and date you need are listed or whould be covered by the "Library Has" line. If so, write down the location and Call No., and then find the volume on the shelf. Stop here. If we don't have it at all, and you have a few days working leading time, then go to to order a scanned copy from another library.
3. Now is there a link under "Get it online?" YES: Click on the link (if there is more than one, make sure the link you choose includes the year you need), find the article, and read it, print it, or email it. Stop here. NO: Go to #4.
4. Do we have the journal in print? Click on "Check the UCB Library Catalog: OskiCat" link. YES: Click on the journal title and see if the volume and date you need are listed or would be covered by the "Library Has" line. If so, write down the location and Call No., and then find the volume on the shelf. NO: Go to #5
5. Do you have time to wait for it to come from another library (2+ working days)? YES: Then click on the "Request this from another library" link. Fill out the info on the REquest form. You'll receive an email with a link to the article when it has been scanned and sent. Stop here. NO: Go to #6
6. Are there other articles in the results that might work for you? YES: Click on the journal title and see if the volume and date you need are listed or would be covered by the "Library Has" line. If so, write down the location and Call No., and then find the volume on the shelf. NO: Go to #5

Modified from document created by Laura McClanathan, UCSC.

How to Avoid Plagiarism

In order to avoid plagiarism, you must give credit when



This content is part of the Understanding Plagiarism tutorial created by the Indiana University School of Education.

Citing Websites

Citing a website

 The complete citation should look like this:

 Anti-slavery International. "Anti-slavery: today’s fight for tomorrow’s freedom." 4/12/2002. (4 Dec. 2003).

 The components of the citation are [in this order]:

•        Author's name, last name first (if known), or organizational author

•        Title of the page, in quotation marks

•        Title of the complete website (if applicable), in italics

•        Date of the webpage or last revision (if available)

•        Full URL including protocol (e.g., "http")

•        Date you read it, in parentheses


Ask a Librarian 24/7 Chat

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All Questions Welcomed!

"There are no dumb questions!" student at reference desk

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

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