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WRT 105 Contemporary Social Movements (O'Donnell): Home

Recommended resources for finding articles

Contemporary News Databases

  • LexisNexisU.S. newspapers and wires, with option to also search world news, non-English news, new transcripts, etc.
  • Gale NewsstandFull-text of over 1,000 regional, national, and international newspapers, including several from New York State

Historical Newspaper Databases

  • ProQuest Historical Newspapers: Black Newspapers Full text/image for key 20th-century African-American newspapers from Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, New York and Pittsburgh.
  • **ProQuest has a number of historical newspaper databases. To access them open any ProQuest database and click on "Databases" along the top menu. Scan through the list and select those you're interesting in.

Reports & Government Documents

  • CQ Researcher Overview of national policy issues and Congressional legislation, with pro/con commentary and chronologies
  • ProQuest Congressional - Pending legislation, U.S. laws, testimony before Congress and other Congressional documents
  • If you are interested in policy papers, statistics, opinion polls, and other political data see the subject guide for Political Science and International Relations.  The tabs along the top of the guide will lead you to the specific type of information you are looking for.

Specialized Subject Databases (includes peer-reviewed & scholarly works)

  • Political Science Complete and Public Affairs Index - Search for articles in both political science and public affairs, many with full text availability.
  • Social Sciences Full Text - Identifies articles in sociology, anthropology, geography, economics, politics and law, many with links to full text.
  • The two above databases are provided by the same company, EBSCO. Much like ProQuest databases, you can search multiple EBSCO databases at the same time by opening one of the databases, select "Choose Databases" above the top search box, then select the databases you wish to search in.

Choosing the right database

Ask yourself what type of source is more likely to have the information you need and how will I use this source?:

  • News articles?
  • Scholarly journal articles?
  • Empirical studies?
  • Data and statistics?
  • Primary documents?

Deciding the most likely source will help determine which database to use. Different databases are composed of information from different types of sources.  BEAM is a method for helping you decide how you might use a source.

Ask yourself if the database you select provides full-text, or only citations and /or abstracts:

  • If the database you need to use does not have full-text, use the or  buttons.
  • If you have a citation, use the Citation Search Tool to locate the full-text.

Understand the scope of the database you select. Ask yourself:

  • Does this database cover the subject area (discipline) I really need, or is there a better, more focused database?
  • Does this database provide indexing for the date range I need?
  • Will this database point me to or provide the full-text for articles written during the time period that is appropriate for my research need?

Although retrospective materials are sometimes added to databases, the actual article you need might not be available electronically, because it is too old or too new. 

Ask yourself if there are special advanced features that can improve your search results or make searching easier:

  • Does this database allow me to limit my search to a specific date range, or to a particular magazine or journal?
  • Does this database allow me to email, download, or export articles to my citation manager like Zotero or RefWorks?
  • Are there features that can help me to generate better search terms, like the Thesaurus feature or the "Browse Subject Headings" features in some databases?

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