ICSM Art of Learning

Periodical Databases

Education and Psychology:
  • PsycINFO
    The principal resource for locating articles in psychology and behavioral sciences, including educational psychology.
  • ERIC (Ebsco interface)
    The major database for finding publications (not just journal articles) on all aspects of education.
  • JSTOR
    Articles from core scholarly journals in many disciplines, usually from volume one of the title, but often not the most recent 1 to 3 years; includes more than 120 education titles.
  • ProQuest Research Library
    A database covering current events and multiple subject areas, but has strengths in both education and psychology.
  • SocINDEX with Full Text
  • Google Scholar  

Critical Thinking

As you do research, you will be bombarded with information of all kinds, so it is important to think critically when you evaluate your sources. While the content made available through the Ithaca College Library and periodical databases the library subscribes to may in general be more select than resources you might find through a Google search, you still need to evaluate the information you find.

Here are some criteria that are commonly used when evaluating materials and some questions you might ask.

  • Authority: Do you think the authors have authority or expertise to write on the subject they are writing about? Is it clear who is responsible for the site (commercial enterprise, government body, academic institution, or just the author)?
  • Accuracy: Do you have good reason to believe that the information on the site is accurate? Do authors back up their conclusions with supportive evidence and documentation?
  • Objectivity: Is the purpose of the information clearly stated? Can you determine the author’s point of view? Did you detect any biases (personal, political, religious, or cultural)?
  • Currency: Was the information found on the page written recently? Has the site been kept up-to-date?
  • Coverage: Does this site address the topic you are researching? Is the information basic and cursory or detailed and scholarly? Is the information presented substantial (something more in depth than you would find in an encyclopedia or Wiki)?
  • Value: Does the site offer anything informative, unique, or insightful? Is the site free of careless errors, misspelled words, and poor grammar? Are their important issues that have been omitted or still need to be addressed? Was the page worth visiting?