The High Library
Elizabethtown College

Latin American Society
A Library Research Guide

Find books
Find background information
Find articles and essays
Tips for effective searching
How do I find a copy of the article?
Internet Sites
Citing sources 

These are only some of the sources that may be useful to you.  Please contact me for help with any of your research, Sylvia Morra, x1452 or email AskUs.

Choosing databases to find articles and essays
Get beyond Google by using some of the databases below, which contain both popular and scholarly articles. Although they deliver their content through the web, these databases are paid for through library subscriptions. Information found here would not generally be found for free on the web; articles have been written by subject experts or professional journalists and reviewed by peers and editors.

CQ Researcher
    This online periodical presents excellent pro/con issues on current events.

SocINDEX with Full Text. 1908+. Articles from over 700 sociological journals, covering topics such as abortion, criminal justice, gender studies, marriage and family, religion and urban sociology.

Humanities International Complete. 1925+. Find articles covering literature, philosophy, the arts, history, and culture.

Business Source Elite
    Use this database to explore the business or economic aspects of your topic. Indexes more than 1800 business journals with full text for more than 1100 titles.

Academic Search Premier
     Continue your search in this multi-disciplinary database that indexes 4700 journals. Full text for more than 3600 scholarly journals. Indexing goes back to 1975 for some journals.

    Contains the full-text of articles appearing in the back files (older issues) of 500 scholarly journals, including 9 journals on Latin American studies, 50 political science and 45 journals in sociology.

Lexis Nexis News
    Select World News as the news category, then select North/South American News Sources. Then select up to 5 newspapers from the Source list to paste to your search. Newspapers to select might include: Andean Group Report, Facts on File World News Digest, Latin America News Digest, Latin American Economy & Business, Latin American Energy Alert, Latin American Special Reports, Latin American Weekly Report, LatinFinance, and Latinnews Daily.

Annual Reviews
and other series discuss the latest developments in a particular field. Click on the link below to search for full text articles on your topic.
Annual Review of Political Science 1998 to present.
Annual Review of Sociology JSTOR 1975 to present (5 year embargo).
Annual Review of Sociology Academic Search Premier 1990 to present.

Criteria for Scholarly vs. Popular Journals

Tips for effective searching
Be persistent in your searching.

Try both keyword and subject searching.

Narrow a search by using subject headings. Locate subject headings by looking at the descriptors associated with pertinent articles and books. 
Latin America, Latin America--French influences, Latin America--Spanish influences, Latin America--African influences, Latin America--Economic conditions, Latin America--Foreign relations, Latin America--History, Latin America--Politics and government, Latin America--Social conditions, also look under the name of the individual countries.

Try these tips to narrow your search? Search the web with Vivisimo then click on "Refine" and click on "Show All Refinements". Try Kartoo for a visual display of results.

Try synonyms (AIDS or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). Can't think of any synonyms? Try an online thesaurus. Try these tips to expand your search.

Try both singular and plural forms of words (use a "+" sign in SocSciAbs or HumanitiesAbs to search both singular and plurals e.g.religion+. Use an "*" in Academic Search Premier to get a variety of word endings).

If searching a compound word, try it as one word and as two words (e.g. rain forest or rainforest) to see which retrieves the most useful results.

If searching a term with an internal dash, search the term in each database with and without the internal dash (e.g. x-ray vs. x ray) to see which retrieves the most useful results. 

How do I find a copy of the article?
What is available here and now?
Search for full text articles in journals using the following link: Locate E-town Journals.
Type the name of the journal next to 'Find:' and then press 'Search'. Full text can be electronic or within the library in paper, microfiche or microfilm.
Check the publication dates of the article against the listing of years for the database or the years listed 'Within the High Library'. If the database includes those years, click on the link, add in an author's name or title of the article. The full text link should appear at the end of the citation.
    Current year paper issues of journals in the High Library are on the entrance level.
    Older print journals are on Level One, alphabetically by journal title.
    If the journal is in microfiche or microfilm, copies can be made in the library.. Ask the reference librarian or circulation student assistants for help.   Order copies online by using ILLiad   Click on Request an Article and fill out the form. You will receive an email when the article is available on ILLiad for downloading.

What if it is not here?
Order items from another library, if The High Library doesn't own that specific journal or have it for the years that you need it. Requesting the article can be done through the databases or through the following software link: ILLiad (Interlibrary Loan). Allow a minimum of 4-5 working days for the article to arrive.  

Find background information
General Subject Specific Encyclopedias listed below have summary articles and bibliographies. Use these sources for preliminary research to establish your topic and aid you in narrowing it. Choose a topic that connects to your own experiences and can engage and sustain your interests as well as the interests of your readers. The topic you choose should be one that is significant and can be debated. The more you know about a topic, the easier it will be for you to find good questions to ask in your paper.

Concise Histories and Statistics
The Europa World Year Book. 2 volumes. 2009. Ref 341.84 Eu89 2009

Handbook of Latin American Studies 

Country Information
    Includes links to the Department of State Background Notes and the CIA World Factbook. Includes data as well from the United Nations and World Development Indicators and International Financial Statistics.

Cultural Influences
Countries and their cultures.
4 volumes. 2001. Ref 327.0905 C855

Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture. 5 volumes. 1996. Ref 980.003 En56

Political Aspects

The Encyclopedia of Democracy. 4 volumes. 1995. Ref 321.803 En56

Social Issues
Encyclopedia of Biodiversity.
5 volumes. 2001. Ref 333.9503 En56

Greenwood's Encyclopedia of Women's Issues Worldwide: Central and South America. 6 volumes. 2003. Ref 305.42098 G816

International Encyclopedia of Education. 12 volumes. 1994. Ref 370.3 In61 1994

New Catholic Encyclopedia.  15 volumes. 2003. Ref 230.203 N536 2003

Encyclopedia of Protestantism. 4 volumes. 2004. Ref 280.403 En56

Garland Encyclopedia of World Music: South America, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. 1998. Ref 780.9 G233 v.2

Dictionary of Art. 34 volumes. 1996. Ref 703 D554

Find books
The High Library catalog will help you find books, videos, CDs and other materials.
For books not available at the High Library use WorldCat.

Writing Arguments

Nuts and Bolts of College Writing

Paradigm Online Writing Assistant  

Internet Sites
Finding scholarly web sites

Google--Advanced search features
    Use the advanced search features of Google to locate PDF documents, focus on only one type of domain name or direct your search to a title or a specific URL.

Google Scholar
    From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles, from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations.

  Search more of the web with a a multi-threaded search engine.

Other internet search engines and directories

Evaluate what you find on the web

To find highly rated academic web sites on specific subjects:
Librarians Index to the Internet
WWW Virtual Library
University of Wisconsin Scout Report

The following is a short list of political science/Latin American related web sites:
Virtual Library: International Affairs
    General Country information and News Source information

Latin American Network Information Center

Citing sources

Format References/Works Cited

Print citation guides (all are on permanent reserve at the Library's Circulation Desk)

Keys for Writers

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers

Publication manual of the American Psychological Association.

Return to top | Library home | Elizabethtown College  |