General and Interdisciplinary Studies
Submitted by email@example.com on Fri, 08/29/2008 - 10:53.
I'm looking for the electronic version of a New Yorker article about the history of the birth control pill. Academic Search Premier says it was written by Malcolm Gladwell, published March 13, 2000, and is available on LexisNexis Academic. But when I click the link and do an author search, it's not there (though I get 50 other articles by Malcolm Gladwell). What's going on?
You've come across an ongoing problem with LexisNexis Academic. When you search for this article by author, it doesn't come up. But if you search by title ("John Rock's Error"), it's there. The problem is that LexisNexis entered the author name in the Headline field, so searching in the Author field misses it. It's always good to search for an item in more than one way, especially if you suspect that it's really there. You can also try the Guided News Search to use keywords or dates of publication to find an article.
Submitted by firstname.lastname@example.org on Thu, 08/28/2008 - 14:05.
How was "race" defined in 2000 United States Census? Was this different from earlier years?
Before 2000, the U.S. Census Bureau required respondents to select only one racial category to describe their racial identities. But starting in 2000, Census respondents could choose multiple racial identifications. This means that many more categories of responses became possible--63, to be exact. The Census Bureau's slide show presentation about race and the 2000 Census is available here.
A multidisciplinary database which provides full-text for over 4,650 scholarly publications, more than 3,600 of them peer-reviewed. Includes topics in the social sciences, humanities, general science, education and most areas of academic study. Abstracts and indexing provided for 8,200 journals in the collection. Coverage is from 1965 to the present
Submitted by Anonymous on Fri, 07/04/2008 - 12:00.
What is a "primary" source? Is there a way to restrict my search in Searchworks to primary sources only?
Primary sources are original records, usually created during the time period you are researching, and not distilled or evaluated by someone else. Examples might include newspapers, letters, or diaries. Primary sources may also be created at a later date by a participant or observer of the time period through memoirs, autobiographies, or oral histories.
Whether a document is "primary" depends on the research topic. For example, if your research topic was Health Study X, a newspaper article about Health Study X would not be a primary source. Instead, the primary source would be the original research--the study itself. On the other hand, if your topic was media reactions to Health Study X, the newspaper article would be a primary source.
The two other types of sources are "secondary" and "tertiary." In general, a secondary source evaluates or interprets a primary source. Secondary sources themselves are not evidence; they analyze, critique, or comment on evidence. A tertiary source is a collection of primary and secondary sources, such as an almanac. For further explanation and examples of different types of sources (primary, secondary, tertiary), see this site from the University of Maryland.
Because sources' categorization as primary, secondary, or tertiary is topic-dependent, it is impossible to conduct a Searchworks search of just primary sources. However, you can do an advanced search in Searchworks to help narrow it down. For example, if your topic is Martin Luther King, Jr., you could search King's name, plus "letters" or "diaries." Or you might restrict the date range to the years before his death (to exclude historical articles written about King).
Here is a website with links to primary sources at Stanford, including those at Hoover Archives, Green Library Special Collections, the Canter Arts Center, the Music Library Archives, the Branner Earth Sciences Library, and The Art and Architecture Library.
The library also has access to databases that include primary resources. Check Databases A - Z for databases such as "North American Immigrant Letters, Diaries and Oral Histories" and websites such as American Memory from the Library of Congress.