Articles & Databases
Articles are generally more current publications than books, simply because the publication cycle for journals is a much shorter time frame than a book. Many articles are further developed by their authors into books and book chapters.
CSUSM leases access to a wide variety of databases, so not all databases will be appropriate to your specific research topic. There is a drop-down menu on the Databases tab that will return a group of databases that have been identified as relevant to research in each discipline offered at CSUSM.
There are various levels of content found in articles. Everything from op-ed essays to peer-reviewed scholarly studies. For help in identifying the scholarly from things your professor will not allow in your papers, this video illustrates some of the characteristics you need to see.
The bibliography offered in a scholarly work will lead to other works on the same topic. Just keep in mind that the resources listed will be older than the article you are reading, so if you need the most recent studies, the bibliography will give you names of scholars writing on your topic who may have published more recent material, but not the most current research and writing.
| Linguistics and Language Behavior Abstracts (LLBA) i
Provides abstracts of articles from about 2,000 journals (published worldwide), coverage of recent books, book review citations and dissertation listings.
|Links to full-text via Get-It||1973 to current||All|
| JSTOR i
Contains (EXCEPT for the latest five years) core scholarly journals in sociology, history, economics, political science, mathematics, African-American & Asian studies, literature, humanities, music, and biological, health & general sciences.
|Full-text||1838 to most recent five years||Most|
| Project Muse i
Full-text coverage for hundreds of scholarly journals in the humanities, social sciences, and mathematics
|Full-text||1993 to current||All|
| MLA International Bibliography i
Includes abstracts of articles from critical literary and language journals.
|Links to full-text via Get-It||1963 to current||All|
| ProQuest - Literature & Language i
Search among ProQuest’s Literature & Language databases
|Some full-text; plus links to full-text via Get-It||1985 to current||Most|
| HAPI: Hispanic American Periodicals Index i
Indexes journals from 1970 on providing information about Central and South America, Mexico, the Caribbean as well as Latinx and Chicanx people in the United States.
|None||1970 to current||All|
| Communication & Mass Media Complete (Via Communication Source) i
Provides abstracts and full text for more than 200 communication journals.
|Some full-text; plus links to full-text via Get-It||1950 to current||Some|
| Sociological Abstracts
Provides access to the latest international findings in theoretical and applied sociology, social science, and political science.
|Links to full-text via Get-It||1963 to current||All|
Includes more than 1,100 peer-reviewed journals in science, medicine, and technology.
|Some full-text||1996 to current||All|
A national database of education literature, including reports and journal articles.
ALERT! Within ERIC search results: IF the "Link to ERIC full text" does not work, try the "Get It!" link.
|Links to full-text via Get-It||1966 to current||Some|
| Dissertations and Theses Database: The Humanities and Social Sciences Collection
Dissertations and Theses Database includes digitized dissertations in a variety of subject areas including Art, Communications, Education, History, Linguistics, Literature, and Social Sciences.
|Some full-text||1979 to current||All|
Books & the Library Catalog
We encourage the use of books in starting your research as the CSUSM collection is a hand-picked set of resources purchased for the courses taught in our university. This eliminates the problem of "too much stuff" as long as you strategize useful, relevant terms to type into the search box.
You frequently do not need to read the entire book. A chapter in a scholarly work may offer the information you need without reading the rest of the contents. Use the index and Table of Contents to see what is there on your topic and concentrate on that section.
The bibliography offered in a scholarly work leads to other books and articles on the same topic. Just keep in mind that the resources listed will be older than the book you are reading, so if you need the most recent studies, the bibliography will give you names of scholars on your topic, but not the most current research and writing.
Being that you generally use a computer to search for books or articles, you need to strategize search terms to find what you need. The computer is only going to look for exactly what you type and nothing else, so this is your chance to be smarter than the machine!
Using the example of 'child directed speech and motherese', here are terms that can return useful information in the library catalog.
- child / children / infant / babies
- first language
- acquisition / learning
- parent /mother / father
In looking at the results of the keyword searches above, you will see various subject headings. These are labels to precisely identify the topics discussed in the text. Here are some of the subject headings found:
- Parent And Child (although this is a broad topic and will include much more than language)
- Mother And Infant
- Language acquisition
- Children -- Language
- Language Acquisition -- Parent Participation
Searching the Catalog
When searching the library catalog for books or media, there are some key pieces of information on the record screen for the title you are interested in.
- Location (Physical Holdings) is important, but before you look for the book or media,
- the Details field provides helpful information such as chapter titles to tell you more about the content,
- Citation information is what you will need to cite the source in your paper,
- Subjects will link to other related materials that didn't match your search terms,
- Bibliographies are a sign of scholarly work as well as providing leads to more resources,
- Full Text Available link denotes online access to an e-book.
No library in the world can hold all information on a topic, although some do try! You can easily expand your search for books by searching the CSU+ collection on your topic and requesting the material to be delivered to CSUSM for pickup (its free!) This usually takes 3-5 business days.
Going farther than CSU+ will require using the database WorldCat. This will search not only the CSU libraries, but libraries around the world. You can request these materials through Interlibrary Loan. These may take longer than CSU+ since they might be coming from outside California (expect 2 weeks or so.)
If you have a book title (from a bibliography or professor's recommendation), check our catalog, CSU+ and then request through ILL if you have not found it.
Please contact the librarian for help if things are not working the way you think or you want to find more than you have.
What is APA style?
APA stands for the American Psychological Association. It is the citation style used in most of the social sciences as well as some of the natural sciences.
Official APA Style Manual at CSUSM Library
This is the official APA manual published by the American Psychological Association. Though the 7th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association was released in October 2019, we are currently providing information and links to the 6th edition. This is because the American Psychological Association expects students and professors to transition to this new edition in the spring of 2020 or thereafter. The CSUSM library is awaiting the delivery of the new guides and the transition of other reliable sources to the 7th edition before updating its own citation guide. If you are required to use the 7th edition prior to our updating our APA page, please go directly to the APA's Style and Grammar Guidelines website or contact a librarian directly for assistance.
- Library copies (BF76.7 P83 2010)
The CSUSM Library owns several copies of the official APA manual that you can consult in person. Click on the link above to see where they are located.
- The official APA website
Need access to the official APA guidelines right now but can't get to a copy of the book? Try out their website. It has helpful FAQs and basic guidelines.
Helpful Online Guides
- A brief overview of APA Style
Produced by the APA. NOTE: HTML version of the tutorial works better.
- CiteSource APA (Trinity College)
Examples accompanied by helpful screenshots and pictures showing you how to locate the information you need to include in your citation.
- Purdue University's Online Writing Lab (OWL)
More examples of APA-style citations and paper formats from Purdue University's famous OWL website. Use the left-hand menu to find the category of item you are trying to cite.
What is a DOI?
APA style requires that you include a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) whenever you cite the online version of an article. A DOI is a special number that identifies each unique article in a database. Please note- some articles may not have a DOI.
- Guidance from the APA (read Online Scholarly Journal Article: Citing DOIs)
- Crossref.org (tool to locate a doi number)
- Tutorial video - using PsycINFO DB
Using APA for Special Cases
- Citing Business Sources (CSUSM Library)
A guide to the most common APA citation formats needed for business sources, compiled by the CSUSM Business Librarian and COBA faculty.
- Citing Government Sources (University of Nebraska Kearney)
Guidance on how to cite many different kinds of government documents in APA style.
- Legal Citations in APA Style (CSU Stanislaus)
Examples for the most commonly cited federal and California legal documents.
- How do I make the § symbol in legal citations? See this guide by Microsoft for how to insert the § symbol using Microsoft Word. If you are using an Apple computer, you can also insert the symbol by typing Option+6.