AMER STD 10: Introduction to American Studies

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  • Corliss Lee


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About this Guide

Research guide for American Studies 10, Instructors: Palmer & Brilliant, GSIs: Brown and Francisco

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Library Prize for Undergraduate Research

Library Prize The Library Prize for Undergraduate Research recognizes excellence in undergraduate research projects that show evidence of significant inquiry using the library, its resources, and collections and learning about the research and information-gathering process itself.

This guide has been archived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.

Overview of the Process

1.  Find a topic that interests you or find a primary source or type of primary source that interest you.  You can browse through primary source databases (see Primary Sources tab), do some general searching in OskiCat (see Secondary Sources tab), or look through an encyclopedia (see below).

2.  Look for background information about your topic (encyclopedias, etc.; see below)

3. Look for secondary sources (see Secondary Sources tab - search OskiCat, maybe some article databases)...look for names, dates, places, events, titles of sources...look through bibliographies...all this will help you find primary sources

4.  Look for primary sources (see Primary Sources tab) - think about what kinds of sources the Library might have? Search OskiCat, and article databases if appropriate, along with some primary source databases as appropriate.

Background sources in American History

Encyclopedia of American Studies (online)

 

 


Encyclopedia of American History


Encyclopedia of American social history


Encyclopedia of women in the American West


Encyclopedia of the American West


Nineteenth-century American western writers

The Bancroft Library - Overview

The Bancroft Library is one of the treasures of the campus, and one of the world's great libraries for the history of Bancroft Library interiorthe American West.

Some Bancroft materials are available online via Calisphere, which includes primary sources  from many California libraries and museums.

How to Use the Bancroft Library

1.  Be prepared! Read secondary sources and know something about your topic.

2.  Before you go:  Search OskiCat so you can bring call numbers with you. You can limit your OskiCat search to find materials at the Bancroft Library, instead of all campus libraries (choose "Bancroft Library" from the pulldown menu that says "Entire Collection."). Remember that there are primary sources in many other campus libraries as well.

Important:  if the item is in storage ("NRLF") and owned by The Bancroft Library, do not use the Request button in OskiCat.  Instead, use the Bancroft's online request form AT LEAST 72 hours in advance (they prefer a week.)

If you have 72 hours in advance, you can also use the online request form for materials not in storage; that will speed things up when you arrive. 

If the OskiCat record mentions a "finding aid" (an index) to a manuscript collection, you should use it to help you find what you need in the collection.  If the finding aid is online there will be a link from the OskiCat record, or you can search the Online Archive of California to find it. The finding aids that are not online are near the Registration desk at the Bancroft Library.

3.  Learn how to use the Bancroft Library. Read about Access (bring a quarter for lockers!) and Registration (bring two pieces of ID!). Remember to bring call numbers, titles, etc. with you. You will fill out a form to present to the Circulation Desk, and materials will be paged and brought to you.

4.     Read about the new camera policy ($10/day and no flash!) or about getting photocopies.

5.     Ask for assistance at The Bancroft Library's reference desk.

Read more

Catalogs

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.

Call numbers are on the spine of the book; learn how to read them so you can find what you need on the shelves.

Search OskiCat

Search OskiCat for both primary and secondary sources.  Examples:

(keywords)  indian boarding school*
(keywords)  "wild west"

* = truncation symbol/wildcard for variant word endings
ex:  immigra* = immigrant immigrants immigration etc.

look at the titles and official subject terms and find other terms:

(keywords):  chicago world's fair

(subject):  century of progress international exposition

if you know the name of a person or organization, search it both as an author and as a topic:

author:  sinclair, upton

author:  united states food and drug administration

 

Try out these OskiCat features:

  • limit your search to a type of material (DVDs) or a library location (Doe Reference)
  • save items to a list you can e-mail/download/print
  • place a recall request online
  • request items from storage (NRLF)
  • view a list of items you have checked out
  • send call numbers to your cell phone (see below)
  • receive alerts of new items that match your search terms ("preferred search")

SMS and QR Codes in OskiCat

You can now text yourself a call number or use a QR code reader to find the location of an item in the UCB Library. Just click on a title in your OskiCat search results, and both options will be displayed on the right.

SMS and QR image

Article Databases

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

Searching Article Databases

Library home > Articles > Article Databases by Subject > H > History > America:  History and Life (scholarly secondary sources)

frontierland  (select a field - optional)
disneyland (select a field - optional)

advanced search

women  (select a field - optional)
homestead* (select a field - optional)

Historical period from:  1840 to 1880

Search Results

UC-eLinks - Find Article Text/Location

Once you've searched a database to find articles, you may need to use UC-eLinks orange logo 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:

UC e-Links image

For more information, here's a tutorial on using UC-eLinks.

About JSTOR!

Library home > Articles > General Article Databases > JSTOR

Everyone Loves JSTOR:

CAUTIONS:

Primary Sources

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

Learn more about your topic in advance:

Use the bibliographies of secondary sources and reference sources to find citations to specific primary sources; search OskiCat to locate them on campus, or ask for assistance at the Library.

Searching OskiCat for Primary Sources

Search OskiCat for primary sources using keywords and adding terms that denote primary sources, such as:

-correspondence
-sources
-diaries
-personal narratives
-interviews
-speeches
-documents
-archives
-newspapers

Examples:

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

Sample Searches in OskiCat for Primary Sources

add primary source subheadings: 


women homestead* diaries

limit by date of publication:

advanced search

women frontier*

years:  1880-1900

western stories

years:  1860-1900

limit by format:

country music

(pull down "entire collection" menu to:)  music scores

(or):  sound recordings

really fancy search hardly anyone knows about:

more searches:

genre/form:  dime novels

 

Primary Source Databases

See a more complete list of library databases of primary sources in American History

How to Avoid Plagiarism

In order to avoid plagiarism, you must give credit when

Recommendations

 

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

Zotero Tips

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,

 

Citing Your Sources

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

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!

  1. Zotero: A free plug-in for the Firefox browser: keeps copies of what 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. Zotero is also available as a stand-alone application that syncs with Chrome and Safari, or as a bookmarklet for mobile browsers.
  2. RefWorks - web-based and free for UC Berkeley users. It allows you to create your own database by importing references and using them for footnotes and bibliographies, then works with Word to help you format references and a bibliography for your paper. Use the RefWorks New User Form to sign up.
  3. EndNote: Desktop software for managing your references and formatting bibliographies. You can purchase EndNote from the Cal Student Store

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.

And When You Find It...Evaluate It!

You already know that you should evaluate anything you find on the Internet.  Here are some reminders of what to look for.

Why Can't I Just Use Google?

If you want to use Google for research, use Google Books or Google Scholar.

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

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Getting Help

Other ways to get help:  in person, by e-mail, using specialized chat services

And of course:  e-mail Corliss or email Theresa (Bancroft Library)

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.

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