Research: Getting Started

So you want to begin using the wonderful resources at the library? And you’re not quite sure where to start? Here are a few helpful suggestions:

  • Start with a reference work, such as a dictionary or an encyclopedia, to get a basic understanding of your subject and a preliminary bibliography for your research topic. Here are some recommended reference works we have in the library:
    • Encyclopedia of Religion, 16 volumes
      BL31 .E46
    • Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, 13 volumes
      BL31 .E42
    • Encyclopedia of Judaism, 4 volumes
      BM50 .E634
    • Encyclopedia of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 2 volumes
      BM487 .E53
    • The Cambridge History of Christianity, 9 volumes
      BR141 .C36
    • History of the Christian Church, 8 volumes
      BR145 .S32
    • Anchor Bible Dictionary, 6 volumes
      BS440 . A54
    • The New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, 5 volumes
      BS440 .N443
    • In addition, we have a cluster of about 25 other Bible dictionaries upstairs, towards the east end of the catwalk.
  • Find books. Here’s a guide for using the library catalog. Don’t forget you can use a book’s bibliography to find more sources for your research.
  • Utilize our journals, which contain peer-reviewed articles that may succinctly discuss your research topic. We have thousands of journal publications in the Journals Room and online access to thousands more journals through online databases such as JSTOR and Galaxie software. JSTOR contains journals from all disciplines within the humanities. Click here for a guide to using our journal collection.
  • Want to use our resources outside the library? Scan the pages you want to use outside the library and take them with you on a flash drive. You can buy an LTL flash drive for $5. More about the copiers and scanners here!
  • Want to save your books for your next visit? We will set up to 10 of them aside for you for 2 weeks. More on that here!
  • Need a book that we don’t have? Let us know and we might be able to help. Click here to request a book for the library.