Today's proliferation of Web sites and Internet search engines provide a wealth of research sources not available before the creation of the Internet. One needs to be careful, however, because many of the sources easily accessed through Internet search engines, such as Google, and Yahoo may (and often DO!) contain unreliable and/or false information. In addition, queries made using these search engines often produce a large number of irrelevant or minimally useful resources. Sorting through them can be time-consuming!
REMEMBER: using online library catalogs, commercially-produced subscription indexes and databases and recommended Web sites is generally a more efficient and reliable method of doing research than "surfing the Net!"
Also, REMEMBER: Work out some of your search strategy before going online! Think about your topic. Write down key terms, concepts, titles, and the names of key people whose thinking or work is relevant to your topic. Be sure to include synonyms of key terms and concepts. Also, consider important geographic locations and time periods (i.e., geographic and chronological limiters).
Places to look for information:
- Online library catalogs: especially Butler Online Catalog
- Commercial (Subscription) Databases/Periodical Indexes
- Internet Search Engines
Butler Library Catalog
Use to find:
- Books - Reference and Circulating
- Scores of music
- Audio recordings - Compact discs, vinyl, and streaming
- Journal subscription/holding information for Butler's print and microfilm periodicals only. (Best to use "Journals A-Z" link).
If Butler does not own a particular item it can be requested through Interlibrary loan.
- You can tell if Butler owns the book if you see: Libraries that own this item: Butler University Libraries
- If Butler owns the item click "Availability" to see if it is checked out and find its call number
- Some books are available online you will know if you see: eBook
Click on "Databases" under "Research" on the Butler Libraries' Home Page (www.butler.edu/library)
Use to find:
- Articles in periodicals (journals, magazines, newspapers) on a particular topic. Info provided may include:
- Bibliographic citations
- Electronic full-text versions of selected newspapers and magazines
- Electronic full-text versions of selected reference resources
- Use the "Find it" button from the citation of the work you desire to discover how and where you can access the journal containing the article cited OR
- Use the "Journals A-Z" feature located under "Start Research Here" on the Butler Libraries' main webpage.
Internet Search Engines
Examples include: Google, Google Scholar, Yahoo, AltaVista, AskJeeves, etc.
The Library strongly urges students to begin by searching Google Scholar! It's available from the "Databases" list.
Use to find websites containing relevant information to your topic, but BE CAREFUL! Take the Butler Libraries' tutorial on "Evaluating Web Sites."
- This is a service that enables Butler students to have access to library resources NOT OWNED by the Butler Libraries.
- You must register to use interlibrary loan. You only need to do this once.
- Go to the Library Home Page (www.butler.edu/library)
- Click on "InterLIbrary Loan" (under "Start Research Here").
- Click on "ILLiad, our InterLibrary Loan system."
- Log on with your usual Butler username and password (the one you use for e-mail and to log on to the computer lab workstations).
- Edit your "User Profile." Be sure to use/give information for your Butler e-mail account!
- When you have finished, click on "Submit information." Now you are ready to make ILL requests!
- When you are in WorldCat or one of the commercial databases and you find a citation to an article that you would like, click the "Find it' button to be connected to a link to the full-text or to interlibrary loan.