Reference works are helpful at two points in your research: when starting out (by offering overview articles of, say, a writer and her work) or when nailing down unfamiliar terms, concepts, and topics that turn up during your research. Many reference book articles are written by experts and offer not only information but excellent bibliographies for further research.
- Alternative Medicine: The Definitive Guide
Describes 50 different therapies. Covers alternative medicine options for over 200 health conditions.
Location(s): Ref R733 .A46 2002
- Encyclopedia of Buddhism
Essays cover a variety of topics related to Buddhism.
Location(s): Ref BQ 128 .E62 2004
- Encyclopedia of Creativity
This encyclopedia brings together the different theories and perspectives on creativity, the creative process, and the psychological, physical or sociological factors that may impact creativity. Topics covered include: Art and Artists, Birth Order, Gender Differences, and Learning Styles; specific theories and theorists are also covered.
Location(s): Ref BF 408 .E53 1999
- Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine
This four-volume set covers the types of alternative medicine practiced today, conditions and diseases that are assuaged with the use of alternative therapies, and descriptions of the medicinal and health benefits associated with specific herbs and remedies.
Location(s): Ref R733 .G34 2009 [vol.]
- Gale Encyclopedia of Mental Health
Includes substantial articles on major disciplines in the field, research areas, and topics of public interest. Offers up-to-date and thorough coverage of mental disorders, symptoms, treatments, and psychological aspects of such topics as obesity and homelessness.
Location(s): Ref RC 437.G36 2008
- Holistic Health Promotion and Complementary Therapies: A Resource for Integrated Practice
Explores the seven major categories of alternative medicine and explains how holistic techniques work. Kept up-to-date with periodic supplements.
Location(s): Ref R733 .H6424 1998
Books are shelved according to the Library of Congress system.
- MnPALS Plus
The online catalog to the library at Gustavus Adolphus College. Choose "All Libraries" in the search options to search other MnPALS libraries (such as Minnesota State schools) and request books through Interlibrary Loan. View our MnPALS Plus tutorial.
- A note about subject headings
The Library of Congress subject headings tend attempt to keep books under a topic under the same headings, so they are slow to change and don't always reflect current usage. The subject headings listed at the bottom of a book record in the catalog can give you clues about which search terms will work best, or you can consult the Library of Congress Subject Headings list, red volumes shelved near the computer cluster on the main floor of the library (and online from the Library of Congress). Other databases may use other subject terms; be aware that you may have to reword a search to find what you need.
Databases for articles and other materials offer references to publications that may or may not be in this library; some databases offer full text of articles and others simply citations. There are in-depth databases that cover publications in a particular field and others that are interdisciplinary. You can access databases from a drop-down list on the library's main page.
- Academic Search Premier
The world's largest academic multi-disciplinary database, Academic Search Premier indexes nearly 8,050 publications and provides full text for nearly 4,600, including more than 3,500 peer-reviewed journals. Coverage also includes many newspapers and popular magazines and spans virtually every area of academic study since 1975. Updated daily. Access is provided by the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM). View our Academic Search Premier tutorial.
- Alt HealthWatch
This database focuses on complementary, holistic and integrated approaches to health care and wellness. It offers full text articles for more than 180 international journals and reports. Also includes hundreds of pamphlets, booklets, special reports, original research and book excerpts. Features indexing and abstracts going back as far as 1984, and full text going back as far as 1990. Access is provided by the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM).
- ATLA Religion Database & ATLA Serials
A comprehensive research database in the fields of religion and theology produced by the American Theological Library Association. Includes bibliographic citations and abstracts to journal articles from over 1,500 titles, citations to essays and book chapters, book reviews, and Doctor of Ministry projects. Many journal articles and book reviews are also available in full text.
- CINAHL Plus with Full Text (Nursing)
Provides indexing for over 3,800 journals from the fields of nursing and allied health dating back to 1937; includes full text for more than 750 of those journals. Also includes Evidence-Based Care Sheets.
- Health Source - Nursing/Academic Edition
This database provides nearly 550 scholarly full text journals focusing on many medical disciplines. It also features the Lexi-PAL Drug Guide, which covers 1,300 generic drug patient education sheets with more than 4,700 brand names. Access is provided by the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM).
Citations and abstracts to articles from more than 1300 international journals in psychology and related fields, going back to 1840. This database covers all areas of psychology, including experimental, developmental, communications, social processes and issues, personality, physical and psychological disorders, professional issues, applied psychology, educational psychology, and behavioral literature in such related fields as law, business and medicine. Also includes citations for books and book chapters.
The primary source for scholarly information in the health sciences. This database is provided by the National Library of Medicine and indexes scholarly literature in medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, the health care system, and the preclinical sciences. Many links to full text are included for articles older than six months. Most of this database may also be searched in the ProQuest interface as MEDLINE.
- SAGE Premier
Search the full text to over 500 scholarly journals published by SAGE in a range of disciplines, including many social sciences titles. Many journals include full backfiles - back to 1960s or earlier. To search articles by discipline, click on the "Browse" tab, then click on the "Articles by Discipline" tab.
- Journal Locator
Find out if we subscribe to a particular journal, either online or in print. If the journal is not available in print or full text at Gustavus, you may request copies of articles through Interlibrary Loan.
Materials not available at Gustavus may be borrowed from other libraries and sent here for you to use.
Location(s): Library - Main Floor
Citing Your Sources
Learn how to cite your resources in MLA, APA, and Chicago Style. In addition to these online style guides, print style guides (and The Everyday Writer) are available both at the library reference desk and at the Writing Center (Confer 232). This page also includes links to RefWorks and EndNote Web.
Need additional assistance? Stop by the reference desk. Librarians can point you to the best resources for your research project.
During the academic year, the reference desk is staffed six days a week except during holidays and breaks. When classes are in session, reference librarians are available at the following times:
Monday - Thursday 10:00 - 5:00 & 6:00 - 10:00, Friday 10:00 - 5:00, and Sunday 2:00 - 10:00.
You can also e-mail a librarian (firstname.lastname@example.org) or IM/Chat with a librarian.
Writing a Precis
Scholarly vs. Popular vs. Trade
Provides criteria for distinguishing between scholarly journals, popular magazine, and trade publications. From the North Carolina State University Libraries.
Web Sites for Mindfulness
Here are some suggestions from a few different university writing centers:
I am happy to discuss your research questions with you. Contact me via e-mail at email@example.com or call me at x7563.
Page Coordinator: Michelle Twait firstname.lastname@example.org
This URL: http://gustavus.edu/academics/library/libdata_pos/page.phtml?page_id=313