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HIST: Class IV History Research Guide (Ms. Dey)

Background Research

Background research is essential:

  • Get an overview of the broader topic
  • Identify sub-topics for narrowing a topic
  • Highlight important terms (people, places, events, dates) - these can be used for searches!
  • References and citations that follow offer an early idea of source availability for a topic
  • The best place to start is with reference sources 


Finding Reference Sources

Search Library

Be careful: a search for a broad term like Ancient Egypt  gets a lot of results.

To narrow down titles:

1. Use subject-specific keywords in your search (EX: Cleopatra)

2. Use the hyperlinked subject headings to narrow down your results. 

Also, our system assumes you are truncating your terms. For example, Roman will also bring up Romantic, Romany and Romanov!

NOTE: You are looking for books in our Reference Collection. They have call numbers that start REF or REF SET and are located the second floor on the Centre st. side of the building.


Reference databases