ICSM Why Are We Here?: Students, Culture, and the Problem of College

IC Library Print & Media Resources

Selected Subject Searches

(Click to run targeted Subject searches in the IC Library catalog)

Education, Higher
Education, Higher--Philosophy 
Education, Higher--United States
Education, Higher--United States--Philosophy 
Education, Higher--Aims and objectives
Education, Higher--Aims and objectives--United States
Universities and colleges--United States--History 
Women--Education (Higher)--United States  

Universities and colleges--United States--Admission  
Universities and colleges--United States--Entrance requirements 
SAT (Educational test)
College Entrance Examination Board   [nothing in our collection but will work in article databases]

College attendance--United States
College choice--United States
College costs--United States
Education, Higher--Economic aspects--United States 
College students--Economic conditions 
Student loans--United States
Student loans--Corrupt practices--United States 
College graduates--Employment--United States
College graduates--United States--Economic conditions--21st century

Universities and colleges--United States
Universities and colleges--Administration
Universities and colleges--United States--Administration
Universities and colleges--Finance
Universities and colleges--United States--Finance 
Universities and colleges--Law and legislation--United States 
Universities and colleges--Ratings and rankings--United States

Universities and colleges--Curricula
Universities and colleges--United States--Curricula
Education, Higher--Curricula
Education, Higher--Curricula--United States 
Education, Higher--Computer-assisted instruction
Education, Higher--Effect of technological innovations on 
College students--Effect of technological innovations on 

Universities and colleges--Faculty
Universities and colleges--United States--Faculty 
College teachers--Tenure--United States
College teachers--United States
College teaching
College teaching--United States

Education, Higher--Political aspects--United States
Universities and colleges--United States--Religion  
Education, Higher--Social aspects--United States 
College integration--United States 
Minority college students--United States
African American college students
Affirmative action programs--United States
Affirmative action programs in education--Law and legislation--United States
Affirmative action programs in education--United States

Universities and colleges--Environmental aspects
Universities and colleges -- Environmental aspects -- Case studies
Universities and colleges--Environmental aspects--New York (State)--Ithaca
Universities and colleges--Environmental aspects--United States

College sports--United States  
College sports--Social aspects--United States
College sports--Economic aspects--United States
College sports--Moral and ethical aspects--United States
College athletes--United States 

College students
College students--Alcohol use--United States
College students--Conduct of life
African American college students
African American college students--Social conditions
Hispanic American college students
Gay college students--United States
Greek letter societies--United States
College students--Psychology
Women college students--United States
Male college students--United States--Psychology
College students--Religious life--United States
College students--United States
College students--United States--Attitudes
College students--United States--Conduct of life
College students--United States--Political activity
College dropouts United States 

Universities and colleges--Security measures--United States
College students--Crimes against--United States
College students--Crimes against--United States--Prevention
Campus police--Legal status, laws, etc.--United States
Campus violence--United States

Community colleges--United States
Distance education
Vocational education
Vocational education--Philosophy
Vocational education--United States
Occupational training
Occupational training--United States
School-to-work transition--United States
Service learning 

Education, Humanistic  [LC Heading for liberal arts education]
Education, Humanistic--United States
Humanities--Study and teaching (Higher)--United States
Interdisciplinary approach to knowledge
Interdisciplinary approach in education
Interdisciplinary approach in education--United States
Science and the humanities
Learning and scholarship
Learning and scholarship--United States 

Adolescent psychology
Body image in adolescence
Emotions in adolescence
Identity (Psychology) in adolescence
Peer pressure in adolescence
Risk-taking (Psychology) in adolescence
Self-esteem in adolescence
Self-perception in adolescence 

Youth--Cross-cultural studies
Youth--Drug use
Youth--Drug use--United States
Youth--Employment--United States
Youth--Religious life
Youth--Services for--United States
Youth--Political activity
Youth--United States
Youth--United States--Attitudes
Youth--United States--Drug use
Youth--United States--History
Youth--United States--Political activity
Youth--United States--Social conditions
Youth--United States--Social conditions--20th century
Young adults--United States
Young adults--United States--Political activity

IC Library Databases (Articles)

Recommended Databases

     A disciplinary database in Education—at all levels.  ERIC provides access not only to relevant journal literature (citations for these end in a number preceded by EJ—ERIC Journal), but also to research published directly to ERIC (citations for these end in a number preceded by ED—ERIC Document. 
     Education uses its own Subject Headings, so a useful first stop is the ERIC "Thesaurus" (above the search slots) to see what Subject searches will work here. This is also a helpful exercise in that once you have found the appropriate Subject Heading you can "explode" it (double click) and generate a list of related Subject Headings. "High Schools," "Colleges," "Universities," "Higher Education," and "Liberal Arts" are all available here.
     Finally, note that ERIC also allows you to set the "education level" at which your topic is addressed without entering a Subject Heading like "Secondary Education" or "Colleges." Just open the "Educational Level" menu (below the search slots) and pick "Higher Education." 
     The most user-friendly of our comprehensive databases, covering almost any topic from a wide range of disciplinary angles and offering lots of full text. Use the default Subject search to find the best subject heading for your topic (and when you find a good one be sure to look at the "Related Subjects" to see if there's something even better). Note: Try running a first search on "Universities and Colleges" and then look at the "Related Subjects" for an eye-opening glimpse of all the related Headings available to you (or try "College students").
     When you settle on a subject heading, open the "Subdivisions" link below it. Most General OneFile subject searchs produce very large retrievals and the "subdivisions" help you narrow your search to a particular aspect: "Economic aspects," "Educational aspects," "Ethical aspects," "Forecasts and Trends," "History," "Political aspects," "Psychological aspects," "Social aspects," and "Statistics," to name only a few. 
     If the best available subdivision is still too broad, open it and add your own Keywords in the "Search within these results" slot at the upper left.
ProQuest Research Library
     Another comprehensive database with substantial full text.  Use the "Thesaurus" (above the search slots) to preview what Subject Headings are available.  Subect searching can be a more efficient way to search than with only Keywords, since it guarantees that the articles retrieved actually be about the Subject--not just use a particular word. 
     Note that to the right of your search results you can limit your retrieval by "Source Type" (including Magazines, Newspapers, Scholarly Journals),  "Document Type," (including Cover Story, Editorial, or Interview), "Document Feature" (including Photographs, Illustrations), and "Location."
     Above each set of articles you retrieve ProQuest will display related Subject searches to help either broaden or narrow your focus.
     User Advisory: ProQuest is fussy about entering Subject searches in the designated search slot. If your subject is a person, enter the name--last name first--in the "Person" slot; if a named group of any kind--Microsoft, the Catholic Church, Radiohead, the New York Mets--enter it in "Co/Org"; if a place enter it in "Location." 
     Both these Ebsco databases are excellent resources for issues in education and youth culture.  In searching both take advantage of the "Subject Terms" index above the search slots where you can browse the available Subject Headings.  Among those available are Universities & colleges (with many possible subheadings), Higher Education, College Students, College Attendance, and College Choice.  When you have found one, double click it for a list of related Headings that might also prove useful.  And note that you can check the boxes to select as many Headings as you like and then "add to search using or" and run the search--all without even retyping the terms back on the home page.
     JSTOR covers a wide range of scholarly journals in most disciiplines, always beginning with the first issue of each one.  This provides 100% full text access to articles from not only the first half of the 20th century but even the 19th--and occasionally the 18th.  Be aware, however, that at the other end of the date range articles don't appear in JSTOR until at least 2-3 years after publication. 
     JSTOR offers only a Keyword search of its complete full text, so retrievals are large, but the relevancy ranking does a good job of putting the strongest matches on the first few pages.  This relevancy ranking does not weigh date, however, and will display a mix of articles written decades apart.  So if your topic is time sensitive, be alert to publication dates.
     JSTOR is excellent in the field of education--use it.  And what could prove uniquely valuable is its historical depth.  Whether your topic involves high schools or colleges, high school students or college students, you can retrieve articles from the first half of the 20th century or the second half of the 19th.  This will allow you to sample changes in education philosophy and practice over a wide range of time. (And note that you can use the Date Range limit to target, say, 1890-1920.)
     User Advisory: The academic journals covered here feature numerous book reviews, so it's a good idea to tick the "Article" limit box below the search slots so you won't be overwhelmed by book reviews on your topic.  

Project Muse ,
     Although a smaller database, Muse complements JSTOR.  LIke JSTOR it provides 100% full text of mostly scholarly journals, but its coverage is entirely current--mainly spanning the last 10-15 years.  Muse offers a basic keyword search (be sure to put the titles of literary works in quotation marks).  Once you've retrieved a set of articles you can sort them into broad categories using the Research Area options on the left.  

    Note: Checking the "Articles" box under Content Type before you run a search will eliminate reviews of books about your topic and leave you with just the articles on your topic.
     The American Psychological Association use their own Subject vocabulary (called "Descriptors"), so a visit to the "Thesaurus" below the search slots is a good idea. If you find an article on exactly what you want, be sure to check the assigned "Descriptors" on the right of the citation for more ideas about useful search terms. 
     Among the Descriptors available here are "High Schools" and "Secondary Education," "Colleges" and "Higher Education," "School Environment" and "College Environment," "High School Students" and "College Students."  Also helpful may be "Students Attitudes," "Student Characteristics," and "Student Engagement," as well as "Adolescent Attitudes" and "Adolescent Development."  
     Note: In addition to the Descriptors above, you can also set an "Age" range (below the search slots) for the subjects you enter, including "Adolescence" (13-17) and "Young Adults" (18-29).  BUT--be forewarned that these age "limits" will also retrieve articles on any age range that contains or includes the one you specify.  So the Descriptor approach indicated in the previous paragraph may allow for a tighter focus.
     User Advisory: If what you're searching for are "journal articles only" in "English," it's a good idea to check those boxes (below the search slots).
Nexis Uni (replaces LexisNexis)  News:  
    Offering a keyword search of 100% full text from a vast number of national and international newspapers, this is an easy database to use poorly and a bit tricky to use well. In order not to be overwhelmed with articles in which your search terms are mentioned anywhere—first
 or last paragraph—or any number of times—once or ten times—use commands to target articles in which your topic words are mentioned early or mentioned often.
     Use the hlead command (headline and lead paragraphs) to target articles in which your topic words occur in the prime news-story position of headline or first paragraphs. For example: hlead(fracking and pollution) will retrieve just the articles in which the words “fracking” and “pollution” are used in the headline or first paragraphs. Note: the term or terms to which you want this command to apply must be put in parentheses after hlead, with no space between.
     Use the altleast command to target articles in which your topic words occur a set number of times. For example: atleast5(“gay marriage”) will retrieve only the articles where this phrase is used at least 5 times—indicating that it must be a main topic. You can plug in any number after atleast—atleast3 or atleast7. Note: the term or terms to which you want this command to apply must be put in parentheses with no space between the number you choose and the first parenthesis.
     Use the date range offered under Advanced Options. Because this is a large database of 100% full text, one of the most effective ways to retrieve fewer than 1000 hits is to set up a time frame. Note: if you use the calendar icons to set beginning and end dates, you need to choose a year, a month, and a day for each. Without the day, the date won’t register.

Nexis Uni (replaces LexisNexis)  Law Reviews
    Offering a keyword search of 100% full text law reviews (publishers of scholarly articles on legal issues), this is an easy database to use poorly and a bit tricky to use well. In order not to be overwhelmed by articles in which your search terms are mentioned in passing but are not the prime focus, 
use the atleast command to target articles in which your topic words are required to appear at least a certain number of times. For example, atleast5(“gun control”) or atleast7(genes and patents) will retrieve only the articles in which those terms are used repeatedly. Note: the term or terms to which you want this command to apply must be put in parentheses with no space between the number you choose and the first parenthesis.
     Use the date range offered under Advanced Options. Because this is a large database of 100% full text, one of the most effective ways to retrieve fewer than 1000 hits is to set up a time frame. Note: if you use the calendar icons to set beginning and end dates, you need to choose a year, a month, and a day for each. Without the day, the date won’t register.
CQ Researcher
     A weekly publication from Congressional Quarterly. Each report (approx. 30 pages) examines a single issue relevant to American public policy, including health, criminal justice, internaional affairs, education, the environment, technology, and the economy. The non-partisan analysis always includes a "Background," "Current Situation," "Outlook," and "Pro/Con" section, as well as numerous charts and graphs of statistical data, maps, and a bibliography for further reading. Issues in recent years have included College Rankings (2015), Paying Student Athletes (2014), Humanities Education (2013), Future of Public Universities (2013), and  Student Debt (2011).
     An excellent approach would be to open "Issue Tracker" on the left and look at the reports collected under the headings "Education and Funding," "Education and Gender," and "Education Issues."
     User Advisory: The archives here extend back to 1991, and since many of these topics are time-sensitive, keep an eye on dates as you scan the reports.

Where's the Full Text for this Article??

     Few databases offer 100% full text.  Most retrieve a mix of full text articles and article "citations"--article title, author(s), publication info, and usually an "abstract" or one-prargraph summary of the content.  When a citation makes you want the full text, look below it for this icon: 
     Clicking "GETIT" checks (almost all) the IC Library's other databases to see if any offers the full text of the article--or if the Library has a print subscription to the journal in which the article appeared. 

  • "GETIT" will usually find the full text in another database and open it in a new window.  
  • If none of our databases can access the full text but we have a print subsciption to the journal, "GETIT" will retrieve the Library catalog record for the journal so that you can see if the date of the article falls within the date range we have on hand.
  • If full text is not available from any database or from a print subsciption, "GETIT" will provide a link to the IC Library's Interlibrary Loan.  Log in (same as your IC e-mail)--and set up your account if you've never used it before.  "GETIT" will have populated the article request form with all the necessary information and you simply submit the request elecrtonically.  Most articles are supplied as digital files and will be sent to you via e-mail when they arrive.

Contact Us

picture of Kelly Hallisy
Humanities Librarian
(607) 274-1198

Search Argos

Social Survey Methods

Ebrary Full-text Online: 
Web Resources:
  • Survey Research: Compact treatment of survey methods and designs.
  • SurveyMonkey: This popular site has a free, basics version--requires sign up--as well as the complete, for-pay tool box. You might also want to click on "Education" and look at some of the survey templates linked there.
  • Survey Design Tutorial: This is a chapter from a book promotion site, but the tutorial may help clarify a range of basic survey methodologies.

Web Resources

Selected Sites

  • Higher Education Research Institute: from UCLA, this site offers many reports and publications.  Under "Publications" check out the Freshman and Senior surveys or go to the "Publications Archive" where you can run a handy Title-Keyword search. Note that some of these publications must be purchased for download, but most are free.
  • U.S. Department of Education: The gatekeepers of all the facts and figures you may need in your research.  In particular check the Research & Statistics section where you can access Facts about Education, where you need to click on those little + signs beside Elementary/Secondary and Postsecondary to see the extent of the information available here.

Web Search Engines

  Google Advanced Search: When doing research on the Web, always use the Adanced Search version of Google. This not only provides more flexibility in entering search terms, but more importantly it allows you to target the Web domains that are likely to provide the most authoritative information.
   Under "Narrow Your Results" you will find the "Search within a site or domain" slot. You may enter only one domain at a time, but it's worth targeting each of the three domains likely to supply the best information: colleges and universities (enter the "edu" tag), nonprofit organizations (enter the "org" tag), and the United States government (enter the "gov" tag). 

Citation Help

MLA Citation

MLA is the citation style used by most disciplines in the Humanities. Here is my guide to the latest (2016) update of the MLA style.

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