Subject Guides

Starting Points

For good background essays, and quick definitions on general issues and topics.

For more good background essays on social science issues.

A good place to start for overviews on environmental and social issues, with emphasis on the U.S.

Country studies, with some background essays for different countries dealing with the economy or social issues
Books (includes ebooks and video)

Albert Search

Search Albert to find books, movies, etc..


Advanced Search

Or you can browse our largest e-book collection:

Find Articles


Discover articles and books from many of our databases.



Scholarly Articles

Both scholarly and popular articles.

Also searches Historical Abstracts for world history

Articles and reports on education and schools

Articles, books, government documents, statistical directories, grey literature, research reports, conference reports, and publications of international agencies. Excellent for analyses of public issues & laws

Articles, theses, and books from academic publishers, and professional societies. An archive of scholarly literature.  Current articles (the last couple of years) can be found in other databases.


Newspapers / Government Reports 

Some scholarly articles, but much of this is conference papers and reports on a variety of social science issues.

Good place for getting an overview on social problems

Excellent summaries and contrasting viewpoints on legislation, with emphasis on U.S. government. Best to browse by topic (e.g. Education, Immigration)

News articles from newspapers and other sources; laws, legislation, court cases, legal opinions, law review articles with analyses of laws and proposed laws.


Find Dissertations/Theses

Dissertations are a great place to find resource lists and bibliographies that could be helpful for your own literature review or research paper.  Many of these dissertations or theses are 100+ pages, so it is best to save it to your desktop, and then go through the resource list at the end.


Statistics and Data

There are a variety of places to find statistics, depending on the type of statistic you are seeking!  Here are some general places to get demographic and social science statistics.  Please ask for help if you are seeking something more specific, or try going to the subject guide that closely fits your topic (for example, education, business administration, politics, or sociology).  There are some excellent statistics on the General Statistics page for the Library.

RAND California is an online source for California and U.S. public policy issues with an...

The ProQuest Statistical Abstract of the United States is the authoritative and comprehensive...

ProQuest Statistical DataSets is a Web-based research solutions tool that provides fast and easy...

Center for Disease Control (CDC) - National health statistics, including wellness, violence, and full reports

Fedstats - Employment statistics, governmental stats (public policy) such as food, energy, economy, and much more 

General Social Survey - The GSS "contains a standard 'core' of demographic, behavioral, and attitudinal questions, plus topics of special interest. Many of the core questions have remained unchanged since 1972 to facilitate time-trend studies as well as replication of earlier findings."

National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)  - Contains a digest of statistics, and other searchable tables and figures.  This includes National Assessment of Educational Progress, Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, National Household Educational Surveys Program, Education Longitudinal Study, and Schools and Staffing Survey.

Bureau of Labor Statistics - Includes National Longitudinal Surveys, amongst many other statistics relating to the workforce.

Panel Study of Income Dynamics - The "longest running longitudinal household study in the world."

United States Census -  Demographics, economic indicators, ethnicity, and so much more, including Current Population Surveys, American Community Survey, and American Housing Surveys.


Literature Review Resources

Literature Reviews: An Overview for Graduate Students - This 9-1/2 minute video explains what a literature review is, and why it is important for graduate student research.  From North Carolina State University.

Boolean Searching - A brief (less than 2 minutes) video explaining boolean searching for your database searches.  This is one of many short videos from the Library's YouTube channel.  From SMC Library.  

JCL 140 / Global Sourcing Project

To find articles on your product, try:  


 To find information about the history of the parent company, try using the International Directory of Company Histories (available in Gale Virtual Reference Library).  Often these essays include recent events or controversies.  You can just search within the set.

Newspaper articles

Business Source Premier and ABI/Inform do include some newspapers that relate to business, but there are other ways to get newspaper stories if you want to see about current events and the product you are researching.  Try:

for national and international news

 for a range of papers from around the world


Company Outlooks

To find a better look at individual companies, try using Lexis-Nexis (domestic companies) and Euromonitor (international companies).  Try using the ticker for quick access in the search boxes.

Tip for LexisNexis: When you get into this database, to to the drop-down menu above and to the right of the search box labeled Search by Content Type.  Under the Companies heading, choose Dossier (Company, Executive and Industry).  Use the ticker for a quick search.  In the results, notice in the faceted searching on the left the links for news, brands, and the legal section. For private companies, try searching by company name and see if they have an entry.

For international companies, try searching in two places in Euromonitor.  For general articles about the company, just use the search box in upper right corner.  For more company orientated stories, use the Company heading at the top of the page and then search the name of the company there.
JCL 140 / Migrant Workers Project

Here are some article databases that deal with political, agricultural, or business issues.

From the National Agricultural Library, this is an index to articles and books.  This means that there is no link to the full-text from the database, but you at least have a listing of articles that are not easily found otherwise.  Use the Journals/Periodicals page to search by journal name to see if SMC has access to the articles.

Articles that relate to business and industry, but also includes articles that relate to the global economy as well.

A great resource for political, governmental, non-governmental and economic articles.  

A look at the economic literature, both scholarly and trade literature.

More business scholarly and trade literature.  An excellent resource.

Browse the latest country reports, with indepth reporting on the economic and political issues within the country

Search about fifty databases at one time.  You can narrow your search to different types of publications.  Also searches Albert

Another "multisearch" which searches multiple databases at one time.

This full text database offers some great insight into the global literature via "grey" literature, conference proceedings, and working papers.  From Columbia University.


Citing your sources

APA Style Guide The Publication Manual for the American Psychological Association is available in the library reference and reserves collection at Call # 150.149 Am35b. In addition, the library subscribes to the APA Style Guide to Electronic References for formatting rules that apply to resources not found in the print manual.


Writing Help

English Department Writing Center

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