Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Almost Last Day of Summer Classes Up Front

View of Davis Library's Main Entrance around 2:20 PM Wednesday 8.7.13

Yes, it’s almost the last day of summer classes and we’re still talking about Finding Articles as we continue our series of posts on the Research Process.  Last time, the OhioLINK Research Databases were discussed with details given on how to select and search these valuable online tools for articles related to your topic.  Today, we'll be giving you some examples of how to locate articles that may not be found online or that you might want to see in the context of its original publication.

In the video tutorial on using on Academic Search Complete that was presented in our previous post, the “Find It” button (see Figure 1) is shown with each record in the search results.  This feature lets you see if the publication where the article you've searched in the database appears is available in the Davis Library’s Periodical Collection.  If so, the "Find It" feature will let you know if it's offered in either microform or paper formats. (See Figure 2.)
Figure 1
Figure 2
Now, if Davis Library has subscribed to a periodical, the “library has” or “holdings” statement shown after clicking on the “Find It” button will give details on the years and formats of that publication that we have if it’s available in our Periodical Collection.  Remember to double-check the article’s citation information—paying close attention to volume and issue numbers as well as dates—to make sure a copy of the article is actually offered in-house.  (See Figure 3... Don’t let all the red arrows fool you—it’s really not that complicated, but if you have a problem"Ask Us!")

Figure 3
Davis Library's Microform Collection preserves and stores tiny images of magazine, journal, newspaper and government document pages on either microfilm (reel) or microfiche (flat sheet) celluloid plastic.   A special microform reader is needed to view or make copies from the information they contain.  Watch the tutorial below for more details.

While the phrase Bound Periodicals doesn't appear in our "library has" statement example above (see Figure 3) you may come across it at other times when searching for articles.  It refers to items in paper format—information published or printed on paper—that have been grouped and fastened together into a book for preservation and storage purposes.  These items are shelved alphabeticaly by title on the Davis Library's Ground Floor. (See Figure 2.)  Some older titles may also be kept in "Storage," which you'll have to "Ask Us!" to get for you.

Unbound Periodicals are the items in their original paper format that have not be bound yet.  Current Periodicals—those issues published within the last year or two—are kept at the Davis Library's Circulation Desk.  (See Figures 2 & 3.)  They may be checked-out for in-house use only.  Coin-operated photocopiers (5 cents/copy) are available on the Main and Ground Floors if you need to make copies from them. (See Figure 4.)
Figure 4
Some older periodicals may also be listed as "unbound" as we may not have a complete set of issues for that particular year or volume for some reason—e.g., they've gotten lost or damaged.  These items may be kept behind the Circulation Desk or in Storage if they aren't used frequently.  Once more, if you need help finding something, please "Ask Us!"

In case you're asking... "If an article is available online full-text, why would you want or need to see it in the context of the original publication?"
  • Having only an article’s text or just copies of its pages doesn’t always give you a sense of its placement or prominence within a publication.  Such visual clues—particularly with newspaper and magazine coverage of an event or topic—may help increase your understanding of the subject matter and its value.  Seeing the whole issue in which the article appeared often lets you evaluate the information more effectively by giving a better idea of how the topic fits (or once fit) into the larger scheme of things.  
  •  Then, some older articles have not been indexed into or made available through any of the electronic databases that are accessible to us via the Ohio Library and Information Network (OhioLINK.)  With these types of articles, you may have to search and find them the “old-fashioned” way, which will be the focus of our next post in this series.  
Again, if you need help “Finding Articles” or any other aspect of the Research Process, feel free to…“Ask Us!

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