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Introduction to Visual Art (PCA 200-Art 01): Sources of Information

This Guide is designed to assist students with their research for PCA200-Art 01: Introduction to Visual Art

Sources of Information

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 library WorldCat Discovery and commercially-produced subscription databases 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 geograhic locations and time periods (i.e., geogrpahic and chronological limiters).

Places to look for information:

  1. WorldCat Discovery - this central search box on the Butler Libraries' home page searches Butler holdings as well as the holdings of thousands of libraries around the world and selected commercial (i.e., subscription) databases.
  2. Commercial (Subscription) Databases - including streaming AV databases and sources for art photos.
  3. Websites - including Museum sites.

WorldCat Discovery (The search box on the Butler University homepage)

Use to find:

  1. Books (including ebooks and print books), Theses, Scores
  2. A-V Materials (DVDs, CDs, etc.)
  3. Select magazine and journals articles (N.B., not all of the databases to which Butler subscribes are covered by a Discovery Box sarch.

Be sure to use the limiters on the left-hand side of the screen to narrow down your results!

Databases A-Z - find link in "Quick Links" box on Butler Libraries' Homepage

Use to find:

  • Articles in periodicals (journals, magazines, newspapers) on a particular topic. Info provided may include:
    • Bibliographic citations
    • Abstracts
    • 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 ...
  • Click on the Journals A-Z link found in the "Quick Links" box to check for specific journal holdings.


Websites - There are a number of excellent art-related websites, including specific museum sites.  Your LibGuide will contain links to several to get you started.

Interlibrary Loan

  • 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 (
    • Click on "ILLiad (Interlibrary Loan)." (under "Quick Links").
    • 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!


WorldCat Discovery

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CAT: 317-940-8575

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