Search strategy
Here is a good, basic formula for getting started with your research in Comparative American Studies.
  1. Begin your search with a library catalog (OBIS, OhioLINK and/or WorldCat) to find books and reference sources.  They provide BACKGROUND and CONTEXT, review and SUMMARIZE earlier work, help you FOCUS your topic and provide CITATIONS to important books, journal articles, conference papers, interviews, etc.
     
  2. Next, search research databases to find articles. The Library has hundreds of databases available, but the ones listed below are good places to begin.
     
  3. Finally, you may wish to use Google or Google Scholar to search the Internet.  Take advantage of Google's advanced search features!
Finding books and reference sources
OBIS: Catalog of the Oberlin College Library Unrestricted Resource
OhioLINK Library Catalog Unrestricted Resource
WorldCat Restricted Resource

Finding secondary sources
NOTE: Some of these databases may also lead you to memoirs and other primary source materials. 

Academic Search Complete Restricted Resource Some full text available Resource contains images
Multidisciplinary - good for nearly all subjects. Scholarly and trade journals, popular magazines, newspapers, conference proceedings, book reviews, and more.
Bibliography of Asian Studies (1971 to date) Restricted Resource
Indexes English language articles on all aspects of  East, Southeast, and South Asian culture.  

America: History and Life Restricted Resource
Index to research on the history and culture of the United States and Canada, from prehistory to the present. Indexes articles and book reviews from more than 1,700 journals published in more than 40 languages. Dates of Coverage: 1964 to date
Biography Reference Bank Restricted Resource Some full text available

Covers over 500,000 people and includes over 36,000 images.  Includes, full-text articles, page images, and abstracts of biographical profiles, feature articles, interviews, essays, book reviews, performance reviews, speeches, and obituaries.


Ethnic NewsWatch Restricted Resource Some full text available
Full-text coverage of newspapers, magazines and journals of the ethnic, minority and native press in America. Dates of Coverage:  1959 to date

Historical Abstracts Restricted Resource
Index to thousands of academic journals covering world history (excluding the US and Canada) from 1450 to present, in over 40 languages, with full-text available. Dates of Coverage: 1955 to date
 
Research help
Other resources
  • Keyword brainstorming exercise -- use this worksheet to help you tweak your research question, identify keywords and related terms, and keep track of what you find
  • CRAAP test  -- this rubric is good for helping you to evaluate the sources you find, both in print and online
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