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Information Resources and Services for:
COM 243: Forensics Resources

Fall 2010
The library has many tools to help you conduct research on your topics. Use this guide to explore a selection of sources available to you. If you have questions, encounter problems, or simply want to talk about your topic, stop by the Reference Desk to chat with any of our librarians. If you are not in the library, you can reach us by phone (x7567) or through the chat window on the library's website.

Table of Contents:

Selecting a Topic
This can often be the most difficult and time-consuming step. Here are some tips for both informative/persuasive topics and also for prose/poetry/drama.
  • Poetry/Prose/Drama
    • Ask yourself if you'd like to focus on a work by a particular author or perhaps an author from a certain country (look in the PQ section of the Reference Collection).
    • If you have a particular subject in mind, use the Poetry Index and Play Index to find works addressing that topic.
    • Browse through recent issues of magazines like American Poetry Review, Canadian Literature, or Minnesota Review.
    • Series like: Best American Short Stories, Pushcart Prize, Best American Short Plays, Humana Festival, etc.
    • Look at anthologies of plays, short stories, or poetry - these anthologies may be compiled by author, time period, geographical region, or subject.
Reference Books
Reference books are an excellent place to start your research. These specialized encyclopedias provide overviews of topics, giving you both a sense of the scope of the topic and good search terms! Some reference books also have suggestions for further reading; locate these books and articles to use as sources in your paper.
  • CQ Researcher
    Washington, D.C. : Congressional Quarterly Inc.
    In-depth, analytical reporting on the most current and controversial issues of the day. Published by Congressional Quarterly, with its tradition of nonpartisan reporting and analysis, each CQ Researcher presents a balanced account of an issue on the public agenda. The objective, forward-looking reporting that characterizes these articles is designed to encourage discussion, to help readers think critically and to facilitate further research.
    • Location(s): Ref H 35 .E352 [year]
  • Encyclopedia of Associations
    Detroit, Gale Research Co. 2011
    A comprehensive source of detailed information on over 135,000 nonprofit membership organizations.
    • Location(s): Ready Ref AS 22 .E5 2011
  • Gallup Poll
    Wilmington, DE: Scholarly Resources 1972-present
    An annual compilation of opinion poll statistics gathered by the Gallup Organization, covering from 1935 to the present. Indexes make it easy to find figures from different years. This organization also maintains a website which contains selected data at
    • Location(s): Ref HN 90 .P8 G35
  • Or you might try one of our many specialized encyclopedias:
    • Encyclopedia of Bioethics (Ref QH 332 .E52)
    • Gale Encyclopedia of Children's Health (Ref RJ 26 .G35 2005)
    • Encyclopedia of Politics and Religion (Ref BL 65 .P7 E53 2007)
    • Encyclopedia of American Education (Ref LB 17 .U54 2007)
Finding Books
For books in the Gustavus library, use the MnPALS catalog. Write down the call number and location information. Use the maps on the library's website, the tags on the sides of shelves, or stop at the Reference Desk to figure out where your book is shelved. To request books from other libraries, visit the Interlibrary Loan page for more information or use the FindIt! button in WorldCat.
  • MnPALS Plus
    The online catalog to the library at Gustavus Adolphus College.
  • WorldCat
    Want a book that isn't in our library? Search WorldCat and use the "find it!" button to request it from another library. It takes several days at a minimum for books to arrive, so plan ahead.
    1000 CE-present; updated daily
Finding Articles
Search for articles in any of these databases. If the full text is not available through the database, click on the yellow FindIt! button. The FindIt! button will search all other databases and our print copies to see if we have access to the article. An SFX screen will pop up, directing you to full text options. If you see an option for ILL, it means we will have to request the article from another library. Click the Go button next to the ILL option to be taken directly to the ILL form.

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