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Controversial Issues, Finding Research Material

How to research controversial issues

To Find Books, Use the EIU Online Catalog

The EIU Online Catalog is used to identify all material owned by Booth Library and almost 100 other university libraries throughout Illinois. It is automatically pre-set to search EIU's library collection. (If you want to search for materials in other libraries, select All I-Share Libraries.)

Keyword gives you a quick and easy way to find items in the library. Enter the terms you want to search for in the box. Then, on the right-hand side, select the type of search you want.

Searching by keyword will find your words throughout the entire catalog, including: words in book titles, authors, subjects, titles of book chapters, and so forth. The more terms you type, the more items the system will retrieve. This is the most general type of search and can give you a large number of results, some of which may not pertain directly to your topic. The results are listed in relevance order, based on the terms you typed. For best results, put quotes around your terms if you’re searching for a phrase.

When thinking of keywords, try to come up with single words and phrases, or combinations of phrases, rather than long descriptions. Think about synonyms to describe your topic, too.

Example searches:
   “hate crimes”
   “gender pay gap”

Advanced Search will let you combine search terms to do more complex searches. It also lets you limit your search to items of a particular type, or published in a specific year or range of years.

Example searches:

      gun control                          football
AND schools                         AND head injuries

To find the books on the shelf, you’ll need to know the Call Number (these are on the labels on the spines of the books) and Location. Both are listed in the EIU Online Catalog. For a map of Booth Library, visit any service desk in the building, or see our website.

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