ENGLISH R1B: Are there stories ?

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  • Tim Dilworth
  • Office Location: 212 Doe Library
  • Contact Info:

    642-3217

Map of UCB libraries

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UC Berkeley Library campus map

Doe | Moffitt | Main Stacks

The Berkeley library system is arranged by subject. Most libraries names indicate their subject focus.

The Doe and Moffitt libraries (as well as the Gardner stacks which connects them) share a broad subject focus. Since they are named after people, the focus is not as obvious.

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Off-campus access to databases

Unless home is a campus dorm, in order to access many Library resources you must first configure your computer to use one of two simple access methods:

Proxy Server  (easiest method)
After you make a one-time change in your web browser's settings, allows you to use your CalNet ID to access a licensed resource.

VPN (Virtual Private Network)
You install and run the VPN software on your computer.  It allows you to log in with a CalNet ID and accesss a licensed resource.

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The "right" tool for the job

It's hard to find what you need if you're looking in the "wrong" place. Choose a resource that includes the kinds of materials you need.

Looking for books & articles ? You're likely to need both the library catalog and an article database.   Which one, and when, depends.

Library catalogs

List what a library owns, its location and availability...

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Article databases

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Where is the article?

UC-eLinks graphic  Many library databases incorporate the UC-eLinks feature. You use it when a result's text is not provided by the database searched. It checks the UC-wide collections to see if the source is available elsewhere...

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Other electronic resources

Need a place to begin ?

Have a topic you don't know much about? Encyclopedias can provide background that will help you get started and search more effectively.

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Evaluating sources

Research is as credible as the work that goes into it! It's important to analyze the information you find, including where it comes from. 


While a library database lists results from sources known to be reputable/scholarly, finding material via Google requires additional evaluation.

Scholarly or popular ?

Some databases contain popular as well as scholarly content. Depending on your needs, you may want to limit results to just scholarly content. You can...

Citing sources

Properly citing sources is an important part of your research.  It allows you to avoid plagiarism and highlights your engagement with related scholarship.

In a nutshell:  "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...." 

The above extract is taken from the Library's guide to citing sources. The guide gives an overview of this topic and links to formatting rules for the major citation styles.

Shortcut: many databases provide a Cite feature or the option to email results in a variety of citation styles (MLA, APA, etc.) 

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Doe Reference Desk

Doe Library focuses on the arts, humanities and social sciences.  This subject base is broad, making Doe Reference a good starting point for many questions.

Research Advisory Service

Book a 30-minute appointment with a librarian who can help you refine your research inquiry, identify sources, and develop search strategies for humanities and social sciences topics.

Secondary & primary sources in the research process

Primary sources

Historical primary sources were either created during the time period being studied or were created at a later date by a participant in the events being studied....They reflect the individual viewpoint of a participant or observer.  Primary sources enable the researcher to get as close as possible to what actually happened during an historical event or time period

This tab

The notes in this tab contain suggestions about how to proceed with research based on your assignment. These suggestions build upon, and presume familiarity with, the concepts and processes addressed in the Choosing a resource tab of this guide.

  1. Review tips for finding literary analysis or historical background, below

  2. Review list of suggested resources, below.  Select one whose content matches the kind of materials you are seeking to find and whose disciplinary focus maps to your topic (i.e. publications in that field are likely to be writing about your topic). 

    Or...
    choose a General (interdisciplinary) database.

  3. If you want to find historical primary sources, this reserach step typically builds upon a general understanding of the time period being researched (see primary resources tab)

Finding literary analysis

Finding historical background

Suggested resources

UCB catalog: OskiCat

Article databases

Other resources:  Subject specific encyclopedias

How to search

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