Read an introduction to the campus libraries for undergraduates.
Set up your computer for off campus access to library databases.
Need a map of the campus libraries?
Each library has its own hours. Click on the calendar for each library to view a month at a time.
Library web page for Media Studies
To find online resources, start with the Library home > Electronic Resources > Browse: By subject > Media Studies > Encyclopedias (or dictionaries, or...)
lists of DVDs/videos by subject; see especial Ethnic Studies and Immigration
View lists of documentaries and feature films by topic; Film Studies resources, bibliographies, and more.
The UCB Library sponsors the Library Prize for Undergraduate Research. Win $1000 (upper division students) or $750 (lower division students) for your research paper!
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.
Developing appropriate keywords/search terms is an essential part of research. First, break your topic into components. Develop a list of synonyms and alternative terminology for each component. Think about broader and narrower concepts and word variants. What words can you exclude?
Topic: Image of African American Women in Advertising
image(s) or stereotyp(es)(ing) or depict(ion) or portray(al)...
african american(s) or black(s) or minorit(y)(ies)
women or gender
advertis(e)(ing) or media
Remember to be creative with your terminology! More examples:
people of color and environmental activism*
environmental justice and hazardous waste*
Topic: Image of African American women in advertising
potentially relevant disciplines:
African American Studies
Gender and Women's Studies
To find books, DVDs, maps, sound recordings, manuscripts, and much more - everything except articles - use a library catalog.
OskiCat = most UC Berkeley libraries
MELVYL = all UC campus libraries, including all UC Berkeley libraries
What's the difference? more details here
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.
Sample searches in OskiCat or MELVYL
look at long form of relevant records and try out official subject headings
subject: sex role in advertising
* = truncation or wildcard symbol; child* - child, childs, children, childish, childhood...
in most library catalogs you may:
Search an article database to find citations (title, author, title of journal, date, page numbers) for articles on a particular topic. The Library gives you access to over 200 article databases covering different disciplines.
1. Think about which academic disciplines might write about your topic. Examples: literature, film, anthropology, history...
2. Find the appropriate article database by subject (academic discipline or department). Look for "Recommended" databases.
Library home > Articles > Article Databases by Subject
Library home > Articles > General Article Databases > Academic Search Complete
Academic Search Complete is an interdisciplinary database (covers all disciplines)
illegal or undocumented (keywords)
media or news* (keywords)
type or if you need it between two terms
click on academic journals in the left column to limit to peer-reviewed journals
add more databases!
click on choose databases (at the top)
select Communications Abstracts, Film & Television Index, then OK
finally, try using official subject terms:
illegal or undocumented (keywords)
media or news* (subject terms)
To find individual social science databases, start with the Library home > Articles > Article Databases by Subject > (name of specific discipline, such as Sociology or Psychology)
To search multiple social science databases simultaneously, try ProQuest Social Sciences which searches 22 databases simultaneously. Click on "22 databases" at the top of the page to add or subtract databases.
facebook (all fields + text)
identit* (all fields + text)
narrow down results by using official terms (NOTE: each of the 22 databases uses their own list of official terms, so a term that is a subject term in one is not necessarily a subject term in another!)
facebook (all fields + text)
identit* (subject heading (all))
narrow down by format:
on the right, click on Source type: scholarly journals
notice you can narrow by a variety of other factors (language, person's name, company name, etc.)
Once you've searched a database to find articles, you may need to use to link to a PDF or html file if the full text is not immediately available. Each database is a 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:
For more information, here's a tutorial on using UC-eLinks.
Library home > Articles > General Article Databases > JSTOR
Everyone Loves JSTOR:
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.
The UCB Library Guide to Citing Your Sources discusses why you should cite your sources and links to campus resources about plagiarism. It also includes links to guides for frequently used citation styles. Also:
Citation management tools help you manage your research, collect and cite sources, organize and store your PDFs, and create bibliographies in a variety of citation styles. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses, but all are easier than doing it by hand!
Tip: After creating a bibliography with a citation management tool, it's always good to double check the formatting; sometimes the software doesn't get it quite right.
If you've never used Zotero before, use the QuickStart Guide to get started.
Change your preferences if you want Zotero to
To use Zotero to find specific articles in our library's databases, set up the Open URL resolver with this link: http://ucelinks.cdlib.org:8888/sfx_local?
An in-depth discussion of the relative virtues of Endnote and Zotero,
Use the Advanced Search for more searching options.
Remember that Google Books search results do not necessarily include the full text of the book; some include no text at all, some include a limited preview (only some pages of the book).
When you use Google Scholar, make sure to update your Scholar Preferences (see below) so you'll be able to use UC e-links to find the UC Berkeley library locations/online availability of the articles.
Step 1: If you haven't already done this, set up your proxy server access by following the directions at http://proxy.lib.berkeley.edu/. When you get to a point where you are accessing resources that the Library pays for, you will be prompted for your CalNet ID and password. For more help see: http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/doemoff/tutorials/proxy.html
Step 2: Change your “Scholar Preferences.” Access these by clicking on the small icon in the upper right of the screen.
Step 3: In search box next to "Library Links," type in University of California Berkeley and click on “Find Library”
Step 4: Check all the boxes next to "University of California Berkeley"
Step 5: Click on "Save Preferences" at bottom of page
You already know that you should evaluate anything you find on the Internet. Here are some reminders of what to look for.
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.
Other ways to get help: in person, by e-mail, using specialized chat services
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