Library Research Guide
Welcome to the Libraries' ENGL 698 Class Guide! This guide is designed to familiarize you with resources at K-State Libraries and elsewhere in order to further your research. If this guide does not have the information you are looking for, don't hesitate to Ask A Librarian for help any time during the Libraries' service hours.
Contact Sara K. Kearns for a research consultation via phone, email, Zoom (video conference), or in person!
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Reference materials include biographies and encyclopedia-type sources that provide a factual overview of or introduction to an author, work, or genre.
Use simple searches in these resources such as:
These resources discuss authors, works, and genres within literary, social, or philosophical frames.
Due to the number of articles and other sources you may find, use complex or precise searches to identify relevant material
Use synonyms and related terms. It's difficult to predict what term a researcher prefers, and language changes over time:
When you find a good source, mine it for other search terms. Look particularly at:
Keep a list of your search terms to try in multiple databases.
Below are two ways to search to increase the relevancy of your search results in MLA: use options on the Advanced Search screen and expand your search terms using the Thesaurus.
Advanced in this case means special search features for literary researchers, not that you have to be a literature expert. Advanced search features include searching by:
Below is a screen shot of the Advanced Search screen, including the search options that appear when you click on the Select a Field option in the search boxes.
Not all keywords will appear in the Thesaurus; not all terms in the Thesaurus will have alternative terms.
Below is a screenshot of the Thesaurus screen that appears for the term African American middle class. Note that the Thesaurus offers two Broader Terms and one Narrower Term:
Use Search It's Advanced Search for more control over your search.
The link to the Advanced Search appears next to the Search Box once you have entered Search It. It is not available from the Libraries' home page. (Pro-tip - click on the magnifying glass icon in the Search It box on the home page to open Search It without entering any search terms.)
1. Enter keywords in Search It's search box.
2. Click K-State Libraries only option to search for items owned by K-State Libraries.
3. Item record shows if an item is available and where it is shelved. If not available, either because checked out or due to the Hale fire, you may request a copy through Interlibrary Loan.
4. Virtual Browse at the bottom of the record shows items shelved nearby the item you found. They have similar call numbers, so will usually be about a similar topic.