This Guide is full of helpful library information which will be useful for students new to using an academic library, or are in English 200.
Locating criticism on short stories, poems, and sometimes books can be tricky. Start your search in the MLA Database in EBSCOhost or Literature Online(ProQuest) from the Library Database Page. For best results, search for your story or poem TITLE and AUTHOR'S last name when searching in the databases. The MLA Database contains citations only (no abstracts about the work: just the title, author, and journal information is provided) and Academic Search Premiere does not cover many literature journals. This means if you ask for more than a work's title you may not get any hits at all. Google Scholar is also a good place to check, but try the MLA and Literature Online first, they are a more reliable resource,
Start Your Research Early!
Most articles on literary topics are not found fulltext online. You may have to come to the library to copy an article from out of a journal or order the article from InterLibrary Loan (online). Both of these options will take a little time and if you're doing your search the night before the paper is due you will be out of luck.
Can't Find Anything?
Sometimes it's not there to be found. Some poems and short stories have little or nothing written about them, If the work is too new, or from a little known author, their work may not have much (or any) articles written about them. In that case, you can analyze the work yourself, or if you have to provide research citations as part of the assignment, look for biographical materials about the author, or articles about some of his/her other works. Oftentimes you can find the author likes to write about a similar theme in his works, or it may be based on experiences from his/her life. This information can provide the research aspect of the paper you need to turn in (but check with the instructor first, you may need to change your topic instead,
Use One Search to search for specific items in the collection, or more narrowly-defined subjects.
CALL NUMBER (how to read the Library of Congress call numbers)
BF= Subject Area
11= Location within the subject- Like a Street Address – Numbers go from 1-9999 (so: 11 is in beginning of BF section, 9879 is at end of BF section)
.H39= (shows where the book sits on the shelf in the BF11 area) -stands for author’s name
If you should have difficulties and need help with your writing, please contact the folks at the Writing Center to make an appointment for someone to work with you one-on-one.
Cherry Hall 123
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Tuesday - Thursday: 4 pm - 9 pm
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Phone: (270) 745-5719