As well as following your reading lists from your module leaders you will also need to find your own good quality resources. Here are some of our suggestions to help you find the information you need.
1. Library Search for ebooks and articles
When working off campus, you can still access the full collection of ebooks, electronic journals and professional magazines, newspapers, conferences and more, from Library Search.
Additional ebook titles are being added to the collection every day while we are all working remotely. Search by author, title or keyword to find books to help you with your essay topic.
We’ve put together a page of tips and help videos all about Library Search on our finding information skills guide .
To find academic journal articles from across our collection that match your topic keywords, use the everything search option and filter your results on the left to peer-reviewed journals.
2. Your Subject Guide
The Subject Guide for Education draws together in one place, the resources available from the library to help you with your academic work. Use the Journals and Database page to access subject databases such as Social Sciences Premium Collection ERIC and JSTOR.
The Social Sciences Premium Collection is a brilliant place to start if you would like to refine your results to education and the social sciences, while still searching broadly across different information types. Find out more about the Social Sciences Premium Collection, how to search it successfully and use the advanced features in the video guide below. It is a brilliant resource for education.
You can contact the Liaison Team for one-to-one support or send your questions to Library Help, where there are staff logged into our live chat service, 24/7.
Between Library Search and your Subject Guide, you will be able to find excellent information to use in your academic essays, but there are many other resources you may want to try.
3. ERIC and British Education Index
ERIC is the most widely used education database, that covers a broad spectrum of education literature including journal articles, books, conference papers and reports. It has global coverage although can be a little skewed towards American education.
It includes basic and advanced search options, and has a built in thesaurus that allows you to select subject headings for your search, that take into account the differences in how education levels or topics may be described internationally, e.g. elementary education versus primary education.
If you want to refine your search to UK education, use British Education Index instead. It is on the same platform as ERIC so is searched in the same way, but will refine your results to a British focus.
JSTOR is a full-text collection, giving you online access to scholarly journals, books and book chapters in the arts, humanities, and social sciences.
It has basic and advanced search options that allow you to search by topic keyword, author, subject area, title or publisher
Scopus is a large, multidisciplinary database, which indexes peer- reviewed journal articles, books, book chapters, conference proceedings and trade publications.
One of the main advantages of using Scopus is that it provides a lot of useful information about the articles it indexes. This includes full reference lists for articles and cited reference searching, so you can navigate forward and backward through the literature to uncover all the information relevant to your research.
You can also set up citation alerts so you can be informed of new, relevant material automatically. Other useful tools include citation overviews, author and affiliation searching, visual analysis of search results, a journal analyser, and author identifier tools (if you are interested in publishing work).Watch this video from Scopus about how to expand your search from a known article reference.
6. Government publications
Government publications provide information in a variety of subjects. Statistics, White Papers, Parliamentary Bills and a whole range of Official Legislation published by the Government. The provide a good, reliable, source of accurate statistics, and can give support to your argument in essay topics. This includes OFSTED reports, Department for Education advice, policy and publications.
We have put together a resource guide for government publications that will give you quick access to the United Kingdom gov.uk publications search and the Office For National Statistics, European and international official publications.
7. OECD iLibrary for statistics and global reports.
OECD iLibrary is the online library of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and gives you access to books, analytical reports and statistics, covering a broad range of topics relevant for studies in education.
OECD iLibrary is certainly worth searching to provide reputable supporting information for your academic work.
8. Statista for easy statistics and global outlook
Statista is an extensive statistics platform covering over 1.5 million data sets. It includes reports, statistics and forecasts on a range of topics. So if you want to know which social media platforms are most popular across the globe, compare homelessness statistics, explore education trends or how many people read every day, Statista is a brilliant place to start.
Statistics and reports can be exported in a range of formats including images and PowerPoint, giving you flexibility to include the visuals in your assignments. The statistics source is included, giving you the information that you need to cite it successfully.
You will find a similar sources on our Statistics and Market Research resource guides.
9. Current newspapers with LexisLibrary
Newspapers are an excellent resource to explore, to provide a range of perspectives on a topic. You can find opinion pieces, social commentary and identify trends in public opinion.
We have a huge range of newspaper archives, historic newspapers and international sources such as Nexis that can mostly be access online and off campus. Our Newspapers resource guide collates all of our resources and will guide you through how where to look.
LexisLibrary is an excellent place to start, including TES and The Guardian education. It provides access to UK national and regional newspapers, from the 1990s to today. It includes the copy text without the images or formatting and all of the details you need to create a citation are on the article page.
Once you have followed the Library Search link to access Lexis, make sure you click on News at the top of the page for full text access to all UK publications.
As so many articles are published every day, you will need to refine your searching using date ranges, combined keywords or by selecting specific newspapers or publication type (i.e. broadsheet or tabloid).
Remember to use your critical skills when using newspapers however, and watch out for Fake News. They are biased sources and are best used in balance with other sources. You can find our tips on our Evaluating Information skills guide.
10. Box of Broadcasts
Box of Broadcasts can be used to access TV and radio broadcasts from over 65 channels, including most of the UK’s freeview network, all BBC TV and radio content from 2007, and several foreign language channels. It’s a great resource to use to find documentaries or critical opinions.
You can view archived programmes, record new ones, create clips and playlists and see transcripts to help with citation and translation. You can also search for other user’s public playlists to help you in your own search.
You can get help at anytime during your studies by contacting your Social Science Liaison Team; Karen and Louise who are based in the Philip Robinson Library.