Basic Library Research

Getting Started

Once you have identified a subject/ topic to write about, use a variety of resources in your research. The following are research tools to provide a wide range of resources necessary for graduate level work.

Step 1. Reference Resources

Use reference resources such as encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, and biographical reference works to begin your research. These provide broad overviews of a topic allowing you to understand the concepts and terms of your subject area, which can then be used to further your research. Often good introductory bibliographies are provided at the end of each article.

Step 2. The Library Catalogue

Use the Summit Pacific Library Catalogue to find a listing of books, reference books, tapes, CDs, and videos held in the library. Searching by 'subject' is more effective than 'keyword' searching.
Other library catalogues you can borrow from:

Step 3. Journal Article Indexes

Journal articles may be found through electronic computer indexes/ databases or printed indexes. Summit Pacific College Library subscribes to the EBSCO Religion and Philosophy Database and the ATLA Religious Database with ATLA serials. This will be a resourceful location to find Journal Articles and Research Papers to help develop and/or support your own research topic in the writing process.

For log in information and instructions on using EBSCO, see

Step 4. Other Electronic & Internet Resources

Electronic resources is a general term for resources stored online, in CD ROMs and on databases, and in this context refer to resources not accessible remotely from home.

Internet resources refers here to unrestricted sites (i.e. do not need a username and password) that are available to all.>/p>

Also see the Web Resources Related to Religion and Theology for more free sites.

Based on the Basic Steps for Library Research at Regent College Theological Library

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