Scholarly research is frequently published in the form of articles, published in scholarly journals. Articles are usually narrowly focused in topic: they describe a specific, focused research project undertaken by the author. When you write a research paper for your class, you're often writing something similar to a scholarly article.
Scholarly journals are the primary means by which researchers communicate with others in their field and learn about the most recent ideas and theories. You'll often notice that in your classes you read many articles that come from the same journals. As you become more familiar with your field of study, you'll begin to know which journals are most useful and relevant to your interests.
You'll hear the term "peer reviewed" a lot. Peer review is the process through which research is validated: When you write an article, your peers in the field will read it and comment on your research methods and your findings. A peer reviewed journal is one in which all or most of the articles are reviewed by other scholars before being published. This is one way to be sure that the research is meaningful and valid.
The Library subscribes to around 35,000 journals, mostly online. The best way to find articles is by searching in subject-specific databases.
Databases are collections of data about articles, sometimes with full text and sometimes without. Databases can contain many different kinds of resources in addition to scholarly articles, including newspaper articles, government reports, magazine articles, book chapters, book reviews, and more.
You can also find articles using OneSearch, but using a subject-specific database can help you find the most relevant articles for your subject.
The databases listed below are some of the best bets for research in American Multicultural Studies.
Do you use Google Scholar? Make it more effective by linking it to the Library and gaining access to our subscriptions.