Eng 1113 (Word Assignment)

Welcome to the John Vaughan Library! The library hours and maps are available to provide general information about the library. Materials are arranged by subject using the Library of Congress Classification System.

Introduction to NSU Libraries

The John Vaughan Library Physical Overview tutorial provides introductory material to the library's collections and services. Use the library tutorials to reinforce topics that are covered in class.

Why do research?

Research can lead to information; information can lead to knowledge, and knowledge is powerful. All of the informational resources available originated from someone being curious about something, exploring it, and sharing the findings.

What is authority and why is it important?

Experts in a field are individuals who might have degrees in a field, work in the discipline, and have published in the subject area.  Their opinions can be very useful in finding credible sources.  For instance, anyone can write Wikipedia articles, but only experts can contribute to Encyclopaedia Britannica. Keep the following concepts in mind when choosing and using resources for research:
1. Identify authors who are outstanding in their fields, determine the credentials of the author. Does the author have a degree in the field, is the author a professor?
2. Date of publication--is it recent? On Web pages, do the links work?
3. Does the publisher have a good reputation? Is it published by a professional association or university press? Is the journal refereed? On Web pages, check the domain (.edu is educational, .gov is government, .com is commercial, .net is network, .org is organizational)
4. How was the resource received by the critics?
5. Completeness of the material. Does the source have an index, bibliography?
6. Is the language slanted or biased?
7. Does it include well known facts or research studies? Is the information complete, accurate, objective?
8. What is the purpose of the resource?  Is it for the general public, children, scholars? Is the goal to market persuade, educate?

How is information organized and from where do articles originate?

The cycle of information is an interesting one.  Research starts with an idea.  Someone becomes curious about something and wants to explore it.  Literature reviews are conducted, empirical evidence is gathered.  The reseoberg may wish to cross disciplinary lines and take a literary theory and apply it to another field.  The reseoberg writes an article.  If the article adds to the body of knowledge or presents a new concept, a journal in that discipline might be interested in publishing it. Article submissions go through a reviewing process in which multiple reviewers will read and comment on the article.  This is an example of a refereed journal article. If it passes the review process, the article is published in the journal.  Indexers read journal articles and assign subject headings to the articles and place the citation in indexes (such as MLA Bibliography).  Reseobergs comb indexes to find articles, and the whole cycle starts over.  This is a cycle that occurs right here at NSU.  Our faculty and students are publishing.  You can become a part of the process, too. Exciting, isn't it?

The Flow of Information (from the University System of Georgia) depicts how information about an event can be represented in different types of resources. Understanding how information is disseminated helps to know where to look and the attributes of each format.

How do I choose a topic?

Listen to the news, read newspapers, surf the Web, and consider your personal interests to identify potential topics.  Read encyclopedia (general encyclopedias are in the Reference area, call number "AE") articles to get background information about a topic.  Consider which types of resources (newspapers, books, etc.) would include information on your topic.  See the chart below for types of resources. 

Below is a chart showing the kinds of materials available in the library that will be needed to complete your assignment. Use this chart with any project to help determine what resources would be useful.

Type of resource
Where to find 
How to use 
Why useful
Reference Desk, 
Middle of 1st floor
Ask a Librarian
Research Help
Call ext. #3240
Provide research assistance
New York Times Index

other newspapers
Index AI 21.N44, 
East side of 1st floor
Provides subject access to the New York Times paper.  Contains full text articles.

Newspaper Source
The New York Times provides general news articles on all subjects from 1851 to the present.

Reference collection, "AE" section, 1st floor. Other encyclopedias arranged by subject. Try Funk  & Wagnall's Encyclopaedia 
Use the general alphabet or the index volume to locate a subject.
Provides an overview and starting place for topics.
Oxford English Dictionary (OED)

Subject Dictionaries
Reference collection, 1st floor 
Ref. PE 1625.O87 1991

Reference collection, 1st floor
Available OED Online or in print. Use the alphabet to locate a word.

Available in print arranged by subject.  (See LC call number section)
Provides definition, history, and usage guidance.

Main collection, 3rd floor, arranged by subject. Also available in electronic format.
Author, title, or subject searches using the Library Catalog.
Provides in-depth information on a topic.
Periodicals, 2nd floor, arranged by subject.
Search  Masterfile Premier or
Provides general, current information on specific topics.
Periodicals, 2nd floor, arranged by subject.
For a general journal index, try Academic Search Premier.  To locate other journal indexes, try Articles and Databases
Provides current information on scholarly topics.
Government Publications
All three floors, available through the
  Library Catalog

Library Catalog

Government Information

Publications prepared by federal and state agencies.
Special Collections, Delores Sumner, Librarian, ext. #3252
2nd floor, south, rm. #222 Hours M-F 8:00 a.m - 12:00 p.m., 1:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.
All of the materials are indexes on the Library Catalog
Contains Native American and Oklahoma history materials.
Reference, 1st floor
Use search engines

The Internet Public Library

JVL NSU Subject Listing of Web Resources
Current, full text information.


How do I Locate Resources not Available at NSU?

Interlibrary loan is available free of charge in which books and copies of articles can be borrowed from other libraries.  Allow approximately two weeks for interlibrary loan requests to be received.

Where can I Locate an M.L.A. Style Manual?

The M.L.A. Handbook for Writers of Research Papers is located on the first floor at the call number, Ref. LB 2369.G53.  Also, try the MLA Web site and the Purdue OWL. For additional help in citing sources, try KnightCite Bibliography Machine. Indiana University has a good guide on plagiarism.

How do I get help?

The reference librarians are here to help you.  Feel free to contact us directly or go to the Reserve Desk and ask for help or for us to be called.

    SophiaBeverley Threatt, MLS, MA
    Instructor of Library Services
    Languages and Literature and Communication, Art, & Theatre
    Resource Coordinator
    (918) 444-3267

Page maintained by: SB Threatt
Last Updated: 08/07/2012