College professors will usually require some scholarly (also called "academic" or "peer-reviewed") sources.
These are the three things to ask yourself in order to determine if your source is "scholarly":
- Was it written by experts? The authors are specialists in their field. Most researchers will list their educational background (e.g. PhD, EdD, JD, LLM, MFA, MA, MS, etc...) and academic affiliation (the university where they work, if applicable).
- Is it based on research? The findings are based on a study conducted by the authors (known as "primary" or "empirical" research), or on a review of other expert literature (known as "secondary" research). There should be a bibliography, reference page, or works cited list of the sources they used to conduct their research.
- Who is the intended audience? Scholarly sources will use complex, expert language (jargon) and can be fairly lengthy. Most academic research is published in peer-reviewed journals or books and are not always freely available through Google. Use the CSUSM databases to find your scholarly sources.
Journal articles, book chapters
Magazines, newspapers, most websites
Written by experts
Written by anyone or anonymous
Based on research
Based on opinion
Longer, harder to read
Shorter, easier to read
AKA: academic, peer-reviewed, empirical
AKA: mass media, popular press
Articles and Books
These databases have mostly scholarly articles:
- Academic Search Premier [make sure to select the box that says "Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals"]
- Sociological Abstracts
- Communication and Mass Media
- Wiley Online Library
The following databases have mostly popular press (mass media) articles:
See an article you want in one of these databases?
- Click on the "Get it! @CSUSM" link
- Look for "Full Text" in PDF or HTML format
- If we don't own the full-text, simply fill out an Interlibrary Loan request. It's free for you to use and takes about 1 - 10 business days to arrive.
- Any time you need help, reach out to the librarian listed on the right-hand side of this guide. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org or try live chat during library hours.
Our library is organized using the Library of Congress Classification System
Search the The Circuit for books from local libraries, including UCSD and SDSU. Delivered to our Check Out Desk in 1-3 days!
Search strategies to get better results when searching a database:
- Identify key concepts and synonyms
- Use "quotes" around phrases
- Use AND between different concepts
- Use OR between similar concepts
- Use an asterisk* to find word variations
Bonus: Use NOT to exclude concepts
Build your own search strategy (University of Arizona)
Government Docs & More
- American Indian and Alaska Native Data including Census Brief
- Census of the United States (1790-1890 at CSUSM)
- Historical Census Browser (University of Virginia)
- Selected Historical Dicennial Data
Legislative and Regulatory
- Bureau of Indian Affairs
- Federal Communications Commission Tribal Initiatives
- National Indian Gaming Commission
- Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA)
- Tribal Governments and Native Americans
- Tribal Justice and Safety in Indian Country
- US Senate Committee on Indian Affairs
- American Indian Health (National Library of Medicine)
- Health of American Indian or Alaska Native Population (CDC)
- Indian Health Service
- Minority Women's Health
- American Memory (Library of Congress)
- Office of Indian Education
- Teaching With Documents (National Archives)
- California Courts Official Reports (also in print at CSUSM)
- California Native American Heritage Commission
- California State Archives
- California State Indian Museum
- CSUSM Native Studies Program
- Journal of San Diego History (San Diego Historical Society)
- Tribal Library Census and Needs Assessment Study
- Native American Documents Project (see California Tribes)
- Native Peoples
- Online Archive of California
Organizations, Universities, and Museums:
- American Indian History and Culture
- American Indian Library Association
- Bureau of American Ethnology Annual Reports (1895-1964, digitized by National Library of France)
- Native American Ethnobotany
- Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) Online Databases
- Native American Treaties and Information
- National Congress of American Indians
- National Indian Education Association
- National Indian Law Library (Native American Rights Fund)
- National Museum of the American Indian
- Tribal Court Clearinghouse
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.