Find Background Info
Background sources, such as specialized encyclopedias and dictionaries, are an essential piece of the research process. They can help you:
- Gather information about your topic and understand the scope of the research.
- Locate reliable sources and clarify keywords.
- Pinpoint important authors, texts, ideas, and keywords about the research area. Knowing what the primary phrases and concepts are will help you a lot
as you are searching library databases and online sources.
Credo Reference is a multi-publisher collection of high quality reference titles covering everything from the arts to astronomy, law to literature, and
science to Shakespeare. The collection currently contains over 162 titles taken from 36 different reference publishers and more titles are being added.
Available titles also include a range of multimedia options including thousands of high quality diagrams, photographs, maps, and audio files. Credo includes
several books on topics in political science.
Search Credo Reference
books in Credo
This database provides access to journal and magazine articles on topics in psychology. It is a good starting place to get ideas for research since it
includes a topic finder feature and information from both scholarly and popular sources.
Print and e-books are valuable sources for academic research. They will help you to gain an overview of your topic and often contain in-depth information
about the scholarship or history of research on a subject. Some books are written by single authors while others include essays or chapters by multiple
scholars within a discipline. Don’t let the length of books intimidate you because you don’t need to read them from cover to cover. Look at the
table of contents and index to find the sections that are relevant to your work.
Find Books Using GriffinSearch
You can use GriffinSearch to find print and e-books available through Giovale Library. To get started, search by keyword or type in the title of a book
WorldCat.org lets you search for books, articles, videos, and other material that are available in libraries worldwide. If you are doing in-depth
research on a topic and are considering requesting resources through interlibrary loan, WorldCat can help you discover resources that might not be in the
Giovale Library collection.
InterLibrary Loan (ILL)
InterLibrary Loan is a service where patrons of one library can borrow books and other materials, and access journal articles that are owned by another
Utah Academic Library Consortium
Giovale Library participates in the Utah Academic Library Consortium (UALC) and Westminster College students have reciprocal circulation privileges at
UALC partner libraries. Each UALC library has different circulation policies, but all require a
current, valid, legal photo identification and proof of current enrollment at Westminster. Some libraries may also require other verification methods, so it
is recommended that you contact the member library you are interested in for details.
Utah Academic Library Consortium
Popular Titles and Featured Texts
Engendering Psychology: Women and Gender Revisited
Clinical Psychology: Psychopathology Through the Lifespan
Running Behavioral Studies With Human Participants: A Practical Guide
Introducing Psychology Through Research
The Giovale Library provides access to a number of subject databases that you can use to find journal articles on topics within a specific discipline or
field of study. The databases listed on this page are those that are most useful for finding research published in the field of political science.
GriffinSearch is a good starting place if you are looking for books, journal articles, films, and other material available in the library. In addition to
searching the Giovale Library catalog for physical materials, GriffinSearch finds e-books and articles from several of our databases.
PsycINFO contains citations and summaries of journal articles, book chapters, books, dissertations, and technical reports, all in the field of psychology
and the psychological aspects of related disciplines, such as medicine, psychiatry, nursing, sociology, education, pharmacology, physiology, linguistics,
anthropology, business, and law. With over 60,000 references added annually through weekly updates, this is the best database to use as you search for
peer-reviewed literature in in psychology.
Tutorial: How (and why) to use the PsycINFO Thesaurus
Tutorial: Sample PsycINFO Search Using the Thesaurus
The APA Full-Text Article Database contains the full text of articles from APA journals and selected EPF (Educational Publishing Foundation) journals,
most from 1988 to the present.
Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection
The Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection provides nearly 550 full text publications, including more than 500 peer-reviewed journals. The
database covers topics such as emotional and behavioral characteristics, psychiatry and psychology, mental processes, anthropology, and observational and
Search Psychology and
Behavioral Sciences Collection
Research in psychology often intersects with research in education. The ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center) database is sponsored by the U.S.
Department of Education to provide extensive access to educational-related literature. ERIC Document coverage includes peer-reviewed articles, conferences,
government documents, theses, dissertations, reports, audiovisual media, bibliographies, directories, books and monographs.
Find Data and Statistics
In the field of psychology, you may collect your own data through empirical research or you may use archival data that has been collected by others and
made available for public use. You may want to use:
- Data: Raw numbers that haven’t yet been analyzed using statistical methods. Data is usually presented in datasets or as a machine-readable data
- Statistics: The numerical information that results from data analysis. Statistics are usually presented in the form of tables, charts, and graphs or
reported numbers and percentages in articles or reports.
The following websites are good starting places to search for data and statistics. Keep in mind that this list represents only a small subset of data
collected by government agencies, academic institutions, and organizations. As always, if you can’t find what you are looking for, contact the
American Psychological Association Links to Datasets and Repositories
The American Psychological Association (APA) has compiled a list of comprehensive list of data sources useful for psychological science research.
View the APA List
This catalog of government data allows access to datasets from Federal agencies on topics such as education, health, and consumer behavior. It is easy to
browse by topic or perform a keyword search to find just the data you need.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive (SAMHDA)
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive (SAMHDA) is an initiative of the U.S. Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality (CBHSQ),
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. On this site, you will find data
about substance and alcohol abuse as well as the National Mental Health Services Survey.
Search the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive
National Institute of Mental Health - Statistics
Statistics collected by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) about the prevalence, treatment, and cost of mental health disorders in the
Search NIMH - Statistics
The open data catalog for the CDC, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC collects some data related to mental health, such as
statistics about drug and alcohol abuse.
Pew Research Center
A nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. The Pew Research Center conducts
public opinion polling, demographic research, content analysis and other data-driven social science research.
Search Pew Research Center
Provides easy access to Census Bureau services, including: decennial census, community facts, economic census, population estimates, and more.
Search American FactFinder
Provides easy access to Census Bureau services, including: decennial census, community facts, economic census, population estimates and more.
Search Utah Data
Citing your sources helps you avoid plagiarism and shows that you’ve done research to become knowledgeable about your topic. Proper citations allow
your readers to track down your sources and help them understand how your research is connected to the work of others in your field. On this page, you will
find guides and tools to help you format citations, and you will learn about what constitutes plagiarism.
How to Cite Sources
With all of the many ways that you can plagiarize someone’s work, either accidentally or on purpose, how can you make sure that you’re citing
your sources correctly each and every time? One way is to become familiar with reputable sources that will help you learn or confirm that how you are citing
your source is correct.
PurdueOWL contains writing guides, grammatical rules, and citation help that will
assist with many writing projects. The APA Citation Guide is a thorough
resource on everything you need to know about APA formatting and style.
Zotero is an ideal tool to gather, analyze, and document all of your sources.
What is Plagiarism?
Plagiarism means taking someone else’s work or ideas and passing them off as your own. Plagiarism can either be intentional or unintentional, and
even the most careful writer could accidentally plagiarize without fully knowing it. For example, did you know that it is plagiarism even if you
misattribute a quote to the wrong author? Even if you cited the source and put their name in your works cited, if the wrong person received credit for
someone else’s work, it can still be considered plagiarism. Other lesser known forms of plagiarism include:
- Copy and pasting someone else’s work and turning it in as your own (without citing your source)
- Using a quote from someone without giving them credit
- Inadvertently giving the wrong person credit, thereby not giving credit to the correct source
- Not putting a quotation in quotation marks
- Changing a few words here and there, but keeping the main ideas of a sentence without giving credit to the original author
That just includes written works. There are other ways that you might accidentally be plagiarizing images, videos, and music, too, such as:
- Copying pictures from Google or another website to use without saying where you found the image
- Using copyrighted music or video clips without permission. This includes playing "cover songs" without permission, too.
- Making a video that includes copyrighted music or movies playing in the background
Of course, all of these scenarios of potential plagiarism can be avoided by knowing how to properly cite your sources. Just say where you found the image
or who wrote the book and you’ll be fine.