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Research Tools   Tags: research  

Information and links to resources the Library has available for assistance in researching
Last Updated: Sep 18, 2013 URL: http://libguides.css.edu/researchtools Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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Need help?

Ask a Librarian....   
   ...at the reference desk in the Library Monday through Thursday 11 am to 7 pm, Friday 11 am to 4 pm, and Sunday
       noon to 7pm

   ...over the phone by calling the Library's main number (218) 723-6140 and ask to speak to a librarian or
        1-800-447-5444 and ask to be transferred to the Library

   ...by email library@css.edu
   ...or visit AskUs@CSS for a searchable archive of past questions about library services and resources or ask a new
       question

 

How to begin?

Use a LibGuide to find out more about our resources. There is a generic one to cover all areas as well as specific ones for majors, programs, areas of study, and individual courses. The College of St. Scholastica Library LibGuides

In general, there are four different kinds of resources each with their own purpose and way to use them. Think of them as tools like kitchen utensils or woodshop tools - you need all of them to make your project more successful and less frustrating. 

1. Reference books - Encyclopedias give background information, statistics, definitions. Use them at the beginning to help you find a topic, narrow it, learn the basics about it, and use the references listed for paths to follow to more resources. Use Reference Universe to find them.

2. Books - Not going away any time soon as they are the only place for an author to write about a topic for more than 20 pages. Books give you the big picture - they are able to give a broad and deep look at your topic. It is strongly encouraged that you consult a book for any paper longer than 5 pages. Consult means look at the table of contents or index for pages in the book on your topic. Use ScholastiCAT to find them.

3. Articles - These are from newspapers, magazines, trade publications or journals. Articles give you an up-to-date, specific look at your topic. Journal articles give the results of a research study. Use either general or subject-specific databases to find them.

These three resources are available in the Library in print as well as full-text online versions.

4. Websites - Use credible web sites sponsored by the government, educational institutions, or organizations. Wikipedia as a general rule is not acceptable at this academic level. Use web sites to give richer, round information like videos, images, digitized primary resources, etc. Google is not always best - try these alternate search engines:
   ipl2.org
   USA.gov 
   Business.gov
   Business.com 
   ProCon.org
   

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