Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Public Policy

Guide to resources for government, public policy, and public administration.

Library Session Materials

PUAD 626 - Lucy Holman - March 22, 2010

  • Handout
  • PowerPoint

Finding Journal Articles

Journal articles are difficult to find through search engines like Google or Yahoo! or through the library catalog. Search the following databases to find articles in this field.

Technology or Public Administration Databases

  • ACM Digital Library [on-campus] [help]
    Coverage: 1985-present. Collection of citations and full text from about 140 Association for Computing Machinery journals and magazines and proceedings from nearly 400 technology conferences.
  • ABI Inform [on-campus] [help]
    Coverage: 1970 - present. Indexes more than 1,300 journals on business, management, with 75% full-tex
  • Public Affairs Index [on-campus] [help]
    Covers all aspects of national and global contemporary public policy issues. Cover-to-cover indexing of approximately 250 journals, and selective indexing of over 3000 others.

Other Useful Databases

Having trouble using the databases?

  • Get a Langsdale Library barcode.
  • Check out the Academic Search Premier Visual Guide, which does a good job of describing how to use most of the databases.
  • Break down wordy topics like "political parties in the 1930's in Central Europe"
    • political parties and postwar and Central Europe
  • Brainstorm synonyms for each of your keywords, and try out different combinations:
    • art and political and Central Europe
    • music and politics and Central Europe
    • waltz and society
    • painting and revolution and Eastern Europe
    • painting and society and Europe
  • If you want specific articles which Langsdale Library doesn't own, you can order them through Interlibrary Loan.
    • Interlibrary Loan may take 1-2 weeks. Order early!
    • Articles can usually be e-mailed to you.
    • To request an article, go to the Interlibrary Loan page or click on the yellow FindIt button in the database.
    • For more help, see our Guide to Interlibrary Loan.

Finding Government Info

Evaluating Sources

For the Research Project, you need to find scholarly journal articles.  To help you see what makes a scholarly journal scholarly, the Langsdale Library has prepared the How to Identify Scholarly Journals handout.

The four main criteria to look for are:

  1. Length.  Scholarly journal articles are at least 5 pages long, usually 10-20 pages long.
  2. Works cited.  Scholarly journal articles cite lots of sources.
  3. Author is an expert.  Scholarly journal articles include a brief caption mentioning where the author works, and why they are an expert.  Journalists don't write scholarly journal articles.
  4. Published in a journal.  Other types of sources can be scholarly, but scholarly journal articles meet the highest standards.

Writing Annotated Bibliographies

Having trouble understanding how to write an annotated bibliography? These sites give advice or examples. 

Annotated Bibliographies
Describes how to write annotated bibliographies. It provides good examples of entries in an annotated bibliography.

Annotated Bibliographies
Guide from the Purdue University describing how to write annotated bibliographies. The examples are particularly good.

How to Prepare an Annotated Bibliography
Describes how to write annotated bibliographies. It gives a good overview of the process.