Selecting and Getting to Know Your Topic: Selected Reference Materials
The following is a selection of available reference materials. Search Encompass Search for more reference sources or ask for help.
CIA World Factbook
Online Location: https://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/index.html
A standard source for current data on countries of the world.
Online Location: http://0-www.credoreference.com.library.muhlenberg.edu/
Credo Reference is a collection of hundreds of reference works, including general and subject specific dictionaries, encyclopedias, guides, companions and more--all online, all searchable from one search box.
Dictionary of the Modern Politics of South-East Asia (2001)
Print Location: Trexler Library Reference Collection 959.053 L527d (Level A)
US Department of State: Background Notes
Online Location: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn
"Facts about the land, people, history, government, political conditions, economy, and foreign relations of independent states, some dependencies, and areas of special sovereignty."
Encyclopedia of Modern Asia (2002)
Print Location: Trexler Library Reference Collection 950.03 E56o v.1-6 (Level A)
The Europa World Year Book
Online Location: http://0-www.europaworld.com.library.muhlenberg.edu/
Library of Congress Country Portals to the World
Online Location: http://www.loc.gov/rr/international/portals.html
A gateway to recommended sources on specific countries.
Library of Congress Country Studies: Area Handbook Series
Online Location: http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/
"Description and analysis of the historical setting and the social, economic, political, and national security systems and institutions of countries throughout the world." Note that some of the entries have not been updated in recent years. Check for currency.
Political Handbook of the World
Online Location: http://0-library.cqpress.com.library.muhlenberg.edu/phw/
Statistical Yearbook for Asia and the Pacific / United Nations (2009)
Print Location: Trexler Library Reference Collection 315 S797y (Level A)
Examples of Reference Works on Specific Countries
Berkshire Encyclopedia of China: Modern and Historic Views of the World's Newest and Oldest Global Power (2009)
Online Location: http://0-www.exacteditions.com.library.muhlenberg.edu/login/encyclopediaofchina
Dictionary of the Modern Politics of Japan (2003)
Print Location: Trexler Library Reference Collection 952.0403 S866d (Level A)
A Handbook on North Korea (1998)
Print Location: Trexler Library Reference Collection 951.93 C548h (Level A)
Selecting and Getting to Know Your Topic: Selected Websites
ASIANetwork: Teaching and Learning Resources
Asia-Pacific Research Network
Asian Studies WWW Virtual Library (Australian National University)
Southeast Asia Research Centre
Search Engine -- Government Information: International Documents (Indiana University, Bloomington)
ASEAN: Association of Southeast Asian Nations
International Monetary Fund
UNESCAP: United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific
United Nations Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific
UNICEF: United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund
ACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS AND THINKTANKS
Directory -- Political Science Resources on the Web / Think Tanks (University of Michigan Library)
Asia Foundation (a U.S. NGO)
Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia Pacific
East Asia Barometer (National Taiwan University)
East Asian Studies Center (Indiana University)
East & Southeast Asia: An Annotated Directory of Internet Resources (University of Redlands)
European Alliance For Asian Studies
Institute of Political Science, Academia Sinica (Taiwan)
Institute of Southeast Asian Studies
Nordic Institute of Asian Studies
School of East Asian Studies (University of Sheffield, UK)
Finding Articles: Databases & Indexes
Subject-Specific Databases: International Relations and Political Science
Columbia International Affairs Online (CIAO)
Full text of working papers, policy briefs, conference proceedings, journal articles and more in the area of international affairs theory and research.
PAIS International (1972 to present)
Citations from 1972 to the present from scholarly journals, gray literature, government publications, and more from 120 countries on political, economic, social and public policy issues.
Worldwide Political Science Abstracts
Indexes international serials literature in political science and complementary fields, including international relations, law, and public administration / policy.
Subject-Specific Databases: Other Disciplines
See a list of all article databases via the Library Homepage -- Databases A to Z (in the Quick Links box).
EconLit (Economic Literature)
Index to scholarly publications in economics.
Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition
A database with articles, some full-text, in various medical disciplines. Emphasis on nursing and allied health, including pharmacology information.
Provides access to the latest research in sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences.
Interdisciplinary and News Databases
Academic Search Complete
Full text access to scholarly and non-scholarly publications in a wide variety of disciplines and subject areas.
Full text of scholarly journals from most academic disciplines. Coverage is from the inception of the journal through three to five years ago.
Full text of thousands of newspapers, magazines, broadcast transcripts, business publications, legal materials, and more.
Omnifile (Wilson Web)
A database with some full text articles covering various academic subjects including general sciences, humanities, social sciences, and business.
Getting the Full Text of Articles
To get the full text of an article, consider the following options:
- If you are in Encompass Search or a library database, look for "Check for Full Text buttons," "Access Online," or "Check eResources" buttons. These buttons will take you the full text of the article or tell you that the full text cannot be found. If the full text is not available from Trexler Library, look for buttons to request the item from another library via interlibrary loan. Or go directly to the interlibrary loan request forms.
- If you have citation information for the article (i.e., journal title, article title, publication year, etc.), type the information about your article in Encompass Search on the library website. If the library subscribes to the full text, you will be directed to the article (see first bullet above). If not, you can request a copy of the article via interlibrary loan.
- If Trexler Library does not have access to the full text of the article, search Google Scholar by article title to see if the author has made a copy freely available online. If not, you can request a copy of the article via interlibrary loan.
Encompass Search finds information by searching through a massive collection of books, scholarly journals, newspapers and magazines, dissertations, conference proceedings, music, video, maps, and more.
To find only books, use the Books limit on the left sidebar of your search results page. Many items will be in Trexler Library; note the call number and status of the item to check its location and availability. For items not in Trexler Library, use the Interlibrary Loan to request a copy from another library.
Finding Government Documents
Muhlenberg College receives about 30% of all materials published by the Federal Government. These items cover a wide range of subject areas--from legal materials and the records of Congress to health and education information and in-depth research conducted by the Smithsonian. All of the government documents that we receive have records in the Trexler Library Catalog.
Google U.S. Government Search
Google's search tool for state and federal webpages.
Provides access to detailed information about Congress. It includes The Congressional Record, congressional hearings, legislation, legislative histories, etc., from 1969 to the present.
Documents Center (University of Michigan Library)
"The Documents Center is a central reference and referral point for government information, whether local, state, federal, foreign or international. Its web pages are a reference and instructional tool for government, political science, statistical data, and news."
Governments on the World Wide Web
World Legal Information Institute: Countries
Citing Your Sources
For information on why to cite your sources and how to avoid plagiarism, see the Get Started with Library Research: Cite Sources guide.
- What you should do to avoid plagiarism
For help using Chicago style, consult the following resources:
- The Chicago manual of style (16th ed., 2010)
Location: Online or search Encompass Search by title or Ready Reference 808.027 C632m
- Chicago Manual of Style (Purdue Online Writing Lab)
- Chicago/Turabian Documentation Style (Writing Center, University of Wisconsin--Madison)
For help with Zotero, a "free, easy-to-use tool to help you collect, organize, cite, and share your research sources," see https://www.zotero.org/.
Need Help with Your Research?
Social Sciences Reference Librarian