Background Research

The Library has a large number of subject specific online encyclopedias, companions and handbooks with exhaustive and well-researched entries written by subject experts. These essays are great starting points that can help you to define and focus your topic. Essays generally include bibliographies that will lead you to further sources on your topic.

Reference Works

Oxford Handbooks Online - Criminology & Criminal Justice
A collection of 15 handbooks on topics such as crime prevention, criminological theory, and juvenile crime and juvenile justice.

Oxford Bibliographies - Criminology
Annotated bibliographies of important scholarship on hundreds of topics in criminology. Each bibliography was compiled by a subject matter expert.

SAGE Knowledge
Includes a large selection of encyclopedias about relevant subjects such as the Encyclopedia of Race & Crime, the Encyclopedia of Victimology & Crime Prevention, the Encyclopedia of Juvenile Justice, and the Encyclopedia of Criminological Theory.

Literature Reviews

  Annual Review of Sociology

  Sociology Compass

  Annual Review of Criminology

  Oxford Bibliographies - Criminology

Finding Articles 

Key Databases

These search engines will help you identify articles on your research topic. Enter one search term on each line, then use the filters to limit by date range and to focus on subjects that are relevant to your research question.

  Criminal Justice Abstracts (EBSCO)

  Sociological Abstracts (ProQuest)

  PsycINFO (ProQuest)  Tutorial

  Google Scholar

ARTICLE DATABASE SEARCH TIPS

  • Use synonyms, brainstorm and mine found resources
  • Notice controlled vocabulary, index, descriptor and subject terms.  Take good notes!
  • Use truncation to search for all terms with the same root: child* for child, children and childhood
  • Combine terms with boolean operators, AND contains both terms, OR contains at least one term
  • Search phrases; quotes work for most databases
  • Use dropdown menu or radio buttons to limit search to fields such as title, subject, abstract, descriptors
  • Save time and frustration with the Help menu: every database has one!

FINDING ARTICLES IN FULL TEXT 

Once you have identified a useful article, check to see whether it is available in full text from that database.  You will see a link or an icon for an HTML or PDF version of the article (sometimes the full article is displayed below the abstract).  If the article is not available in full text through that database, it may still be available through another vendor.  Click the find it button to see if it is available. 

NEWS SOURCES

The Library subscribes to a variety of newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post,  and the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Access to the text of many newspapers is available through Proquest Newspapers and Lexis Nexis Academic.

See also this recent Library Blog post about Fetching Newspapers.

Citing Your Sources

Citation and Writing Tools 
A guide by Falvey librarians, with information on citation styles and citation management software.

Zotero.org 
Zotero is a free, easy-to-use citation management tool that must be downloaded to your computer. Go to Zotero.org to sign up for your Zotero account and to download the software and the browser plugin. Click here to download a quick-start guide to Zotero.

ZoteroBib 
ZoteroBib is a free web-based tool for creating quick, on-the-fly bibliographies. Click here to download a quick-start guide to ZoteroBib.