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This unpublished guide contains copyable/linkable generic content for other guides.

Service Desk Contact Information

Contact the Library Service desk for the answers to your questions!

Reference Phone: 404-727-6875
Circulation Phone: 404-727-6873
E-mail: WoodRef@emory.edu
In Person:
Woodruff Library, Main floor
IM: EmoryWoodRef or use the widget above

Click here for our current library hours

Make an Appointment at the Writing Center

The Writing Center manages scheduling via a web-based program called Tutor Trac.

EndNote & Zotero

Manage citations with EndNote or Zotero.

  • Collect citations online.
  • Organize them however you like.
  • Format bibliographies automatically.

How to get started?

Compare EndNote and Zotero.

discoverE

Use discoverE to find books, journals, videos, government documents, microfilm collections and other materials at the Emory libraries, which include Woodruff, Pitts Theology, Health Sciences Center, McMillan Law, Guy Chemistry, Math & Science Center and, Oxford libraries.

Getting Help

Getting personalized research assistance is easy! Librarians are available to help you in-person or via telephone, e-mail, and IM.

Face-to-face help is available at the Woodruff Service Desk on level 2. For our service hours, please see our current service desk hours.

Appointments with a subject specialist can be made by current Emory students, faculty and staff. To set up a consultation appointment with a subject librarian, see our Subject Librarian Directory and e-mail the appropriate librarian. If you do not see a liaison for your subject, please contact us using the e-mail form.

Call us by phone at 404-727-6873.

Or you can send us an instant message.

Or browse a topic:

Interlibrary Loan

Using Interlibrary Loan (ILL), you can:

  • borrow books and more from other libraries
  • get copies of articles that Emory doesn't own

You will be notified when your materials arrive (most materials are obtained within 2 weeks).

Search Libraries Worldwide

A catalog for libraries worldwide, WorldCat contains citations for books, journals, manuscripts, maps, music scores, sound recordings, films, computer files, newspapers, slides, and videotapes.

Materials from WorldCat may be requested through Interlibrary Loan.

Borrowing From Other Local Libraries

Emory students, faculty and staff can borrow materials from the University of Georgia, Georgia Tech, and Georgia State by presenting an Emory ID.

They have also limited borrowing privileges at some local libraries. Before planning your visit, you must get an interlibrary use card from the Library Service Desk on Level 2.

For more information, please visit our page on borrowing materials from local libraries.

Searching For Books In discoverE

From the Catalog tab in discoverE:

  • Type in your keywords
  • When you get some results, use "Refine My Results" on the left to narrow your search by author, item type, date and more

* Too many search results? 

  • Add additional terms to your search
  • Limit your search by item type, exact phrase, and/or author/title/subject using discoverE's drop-down menus
  • Use discoverE's "Refine My Results" feature (in the left column) 

* Too few results?

  • Remove some terms from your search
  • Add synonyms using OR [in upper case] with parentheses - for example (women OR woman OR female)

* Off-topic results?

Consult the discoverE help page for further tips.

Call Numbers (Finding Books in the Stacks)

Most of the Emory libraries use the Library of Congress classification system of letters and numbers to group materials by subject. These call numbers are listed in discoverE and marked on each book. Use our call number guide to find out which floor of the library has the book you need.

Requests and Recalls

If a book you're looking for is at Oxford College, in Storage, or checked out, don't fear!

Books that are in Storage or at Oxford can be requested, and checked out books can be recalled.

In discoverE:

  • click the "Get It" link

  • this will open a new window displaying the full record of the item
  • click on the blue Request button and follow directions

In EUCLID:

  • click on the "View" button to display the complete item record
  • click on the blue Request button and follow directions

You'll be notified by email when the item is available. NOTE: if the item is checked out, the borrower has two weeks to return it.

Three Ways to Find Articles

  • Search one of the library's 400+ databases
    Databases like JSTOR, LexisNexis, and Academic Search Complete provide citations and/or full text of journal articles, books, and other materials. Emory University Libraries pay for access to the contents of more than 400 databases. See our Databases page for a list of databases.
  • Search Google Scholar
    Google Scholar
    searches specifically for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts and technical reports from all broad areas of research.

For more information, see Find Articles at Woodruff Library guide.

Searching For Articles In discoverE

From the articles tab in discoverE you can search SOME of our databases.

discoverE defaults to searching "Academic Search Complete," a broad multidisciplinary database.

To search other databases, use the drop-down menu to choose a subject:

  1. Enter your search terms.
  2. Use discoverE's 'Refine My Results' feature (in the left column) to limit your search by topic, author, and date.
  3. Click on the "Full Text Available' link if there is one. You should also click on the "No Full Text" links; some of them will lead to a full-text online copy.
  4. If it's NOT available online, follow these directions.

Using Databases to Find Articles

Databases like JSTOR, LexisNexis, and Academic Search Complete provide citations and/or full text of journal articles, books, and other materials. Emory University Libraries pay for access to the contents of more than 400 databases. See our Databases page for a complete listing. For help with searching databases, see our Finding Articles at Woodruff research guide.

Access from off-campus is available only to current Emory University students, faculty and staff, and requires an Emory Network ID and password.

Google Scholar

Google Scholar searches specifically for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts and technical reports from all broad areas of research.

Scholarly Journals and Evaluating Resources

Scholarly journals review submitted articles before they are published. Many professors require students to use scholarly journal articles as resources when writing research papers. Here are tips on locating scholarly journal articles and evaluating sources.

Primary Sources

A primary source is a document, recording or other source of information created at the time being studied, by an authoritative source, usually one with direct personal knowledge of the events being described.

Primary sources include diaries, letters, family records, statistics, speeches, interviews, autobiographies, film, government documents, or original scientific research.

Primary sources can be found in Woodruff's Manuscripts, Archives, and Rare Book Library (MARBL).

You can also find many primary source materials via discoverE.

MARBL

In the Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library (MARBL), you can browse rare books, read original letters and manuscripts, and listen to rare recordings.

MARBL's renowned collections span more than 800 years of history—with particular depth in modern literature, African American history, and the history of Georgia and the South.

For hours, services, and guides to the collection please see the Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library page.

Zotero

Zotero helps you collect, manage, and cite research sources. Zotero allows you to attach PDFs, notes and images to your citations, organize them into collections for different projects, and create bibliographies using Word or Open Office.

EndNote

EndNote is a program that makes it possible to collect and organize references in a database and instantly create properly formatted bibliographies.

Evaluating Sources

Questions to ask:

  • Have you used a variety of sources?

     

    • Compare and contrast the information you find with several authors and and array of sources such as books, Emory dissertations, journal articles, and studies.
    • Comparing and contrasting the information will help you in identifying any bias and enhance the validity and reliability of your research.

  • What are the author's qualifications and affiliation (i.e., where does the author work)?
  • What is the date of the publication? Is the information out-of-date for your topic?
  • Who's published it?

    Is it a university press -- in which case the material is more likely to be scholarly -- or a well-known publisher?

  • Is the information valid and well-researched?

    That is, are the author's ideas supported with research documented by footnotes, a bibliography, and/or a works cited page?

The "Five Criteria," used for evaluating WWW sites, can be used when evaluating information from any source (magazine articles, books, newspaper articles, etc.)

Evaluating Web Sites

Q: How do you know if a website is a reliable source of information?

A: Ask questions.

Put websites to the test by using the UCLA Libraries' Thinking Critically about World Wide Web Resources page to guide you. Created by Esther Grassian, the UCLA Library and used with permission.

The CRAAP Test

How do you know if a source that you find is research paper quality?

Try putting it through The CRAAP Method of Evaluating Information, a series of questions developed by librarians at California State University, Chico.

This test is designed to work for all information sources, including websites.

Click here to find the complete CRAAP Test pdf - just one page!

The acronym CRAAP stands for:

Currency: The timeliness of information.
Relevance: The importance of information for your needs.
Authority: The source of the information.
Accuracy: The reliability, truthfulness, and correctness of the information content.
Purpose: The reason the information exists.

Plagiarism

Using the work of another scholar without proper citation, whether that work is available in print or online, is plagiarism, a violation of the Emory Honor Code. See the Citing your Sources guide for more information.

Style Guides

The Citing Your Sources research guide provides information on why you should cite your sources, plagiarism and how to avoid common mistakes, as well as a list of style manuals. A selected list of style manuals are listed below.

The Chicago Manual of Style Online
Also in print: 16th ed. Z253 .U69 2010 Reference Desk

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. 7th ed.
In print: LB2369 .G53 2009 Reference Desk
See the Purdue Online Writing Lab MLA Formatting and Style Guide for some online help.

Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. 6th ed.
In print: BF76.7 .P83 2010 Reference Desk
See the Purdue Online Writing Lab APA Formatting and Style Guide for some online help.

Purchase Requests

You may request that the library buy materials by either contacting a librarian directly, or filling out our purchase request form.

Data Center

The Electronic Data Center, located in Room 217 of the Woodruff Library, provides assistance with locating numeric and spatial data for research purposes. Please note that the Data Center does not advise patrons on methodological issues or assist them with doing their data analysis. For more information on services and staff hours, please visit the Electronic Data Center homepage.

Writing Center

Emory's Writing Center offers personalized one-to-one support for writing assignments. Sessions with tutors are available by appointment or during walk-in hours.

Woodruff Library Undergraduate Research Award

Woodruff Library is again sponsoring an award for undergraduate research.  A panel of faculty and librarians will award up to three prizes of $500 each to those undergraduate students who:

1) make extensive use of Woodruff Library’s collections and research resources in their original scholarship;

2) show evidence of critical analysis in their research skills (i.e., locating, selecting, evaluating, and synthesizing information). 

At least one prize will go to a first-year student.

We encourage submissions from undergraduate students who have submitted extraordinary research papers for a credit course from the current academic year. The application deadline is Wednesday, March 6th, 2013.

For more information and to apply, please visit http://web.library.emory.edu/services/woodruff-library-undergraduate-research-award.

Finding U.S. Government Documents

Start by searching discoverE, the library catalog. But be aware that many of our print and microfiche government documents are not yet cataloged.

Here are additional tools to identify government publications. If you need assistance in searching, please don't hesitate to ask for help.

Microforms - Information Resources in an Itty Bitty Format

Woodruff Library has millions of pages of newspapers, government documents, manuscript and archival records, and other primary source collections in microformat.  Microforms are a storage medium containing materials that are photographed at a greatly reduced size for ease of storage and preservation.

The most common types of microforms are microfilm, which resembles a pint-size movie reel; and microfiche, which looks like a large plastic index card. Woodruff's microform collections are listed in EUCLID and discoverE and are physically located on Level 1 of the Robert W. Woodruff Library.  They can be viewed, printed and scanned using special equipment also located on Level 1.

It takes practice to search for and use microforms effectively - so ask for help!

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