Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL) is a library of subject-specific scholarly encyclopedias available through Falvey Library. This interactive tutorial will demonstrate how to select the most suitable articles in GVRL, how to search specific encyclopedias, and how to identify the best publications about your subject.
For the purpose of this exercise our topic will be Calvinism. On the right side of the screen you can see the GVRL search interface. You may have to log in with your ldap password first, if you are off-campus. Use the navigation arrows at the bottom to advance to the next pages.
Click on the right arrow below to start.
Enter “Calvinism” into the search box at the top of the GVRL homepage, execute the search, and take a couple of minutes to review results.
Advance to the next screen when you are done.
More than 600 articles in the GVRL library matched the search term “Calvinism.” Although GVRL's relevance ranking works fairly well, the articles listed at the top may not be the most helpful for your project. GVRL comprises encyclopedias from many different disciplines and paying attention to publication titles will save you time. Publication titles are listed directly underneath the titles of the articles.
Which encyclopedia is better suited for a paper about Calvinism in 16th century Switzerland?
Advance to the next screen to continue.
Identify the longest article among the first 20 results.
Advance to the next screen where we will explore bibliographies.
William Monter, the author of “Calvinism” in Europe, 1450 to 1789, recommends a recent book about Calvinism which synthesizes the available research on this topic. What is the title of this book?
How many books authored by Philip Benedict does Falvey Library have?Open a new tab or browser window and use the library's catalog to answer this question. DO NOT navigate away from the tutorial!
Advance to the next screen.
Mistakes often sneak into bibliographies in spite of repeated editing. The title of Philip Benedict’s book about Calvinism is incorrect. Use Falvey Library’s catalog to find the correct title. You have the author and the year of publication to help you.
Advance to the next screen where we will explore See Also references.
Look at the "See also" links listed in Monter's article about Calvinism. You can find them directly above the bibliography. These links refer to related articles in the SAME encyclopedia. Europe, 1450 to 1789 has related articles about Martin Luther, John Calvin and Geneva as you can see. You have read in Monter’s essay that the protestant movement in Switzerland began with Huldrych Zwingli. Click on the link to the article about Zwingli in Europe, 1450 to 1789.
Gordon cites his book about the subject. What is the title?
Advance to the next screen to explore related subjects in GVRL.
Which encyclopedia has the longest article about Zwingli?
This short introduction covered the basic navigation features of GVRL. Feel free to further explore advanced search features.
Advance to the next screen and complete the quiz to test your GVRL agility.
Which statement best describes GVRL?
What types of sources are cited in the bibliographies and further reading lists of GVRL articles?
What is the purpose of “See Also” references in GVRL articles?
True or false? GVRL search results can be narrowed by subject, document type and publication title.
Which GVRL article is likely to be more helpful for a history research paper about humanism in the Renaissance?
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