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Resources for Applied Art, Art History, and Visual Culture students at Butler University

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 
  2. Commercial (Subscription) Databases
  3. Internet Search Engines

WorldCat Discover (The search bar on the Butler University homepage)

Use to find:

  1. Books, Theses, Scores
  2. A-V Materials (DVDs, CDs, etc.)
  3. Select magazine and journals articles

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

Electronic/Commercial Databases

Click on "Databases" on the Butler Libraries' Home Page (

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 ...
  • 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 revevant information to your topic, but BE CAREFUL! Be sure to evaluate the site for authority, currency, relevancy, purpose/bias.

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!



Email Butler University Libraries
Irwin Library: 317-940-9227
Science Library: 317-940-9937
CAT: 317-940-8575

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