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research tips

exterior image of wheelock college library building

Your Hub for Academic Support

The Wheelock College Youtube channel recently released a video about one of the most popular places at Wheelock – the library! It is a one-stop shop for a variety of academic support services  –  Library resources, Peer Tutoring, the Writing Center, and the Office of Access and Disability Resources.  There have been a few changes since the footage was originally filmed (can you spot the changes?), but the resources and services offered remain the same.   The library has space, books, articles, technology (especially printing!), and people who provide valuable services that support students’ academic success.

This is the Wheelock College Library blog, so of course, I’ve got to make a plug for our library.  The library is often considered a well-known entity.   There is an immediate and familiar association with books and librarians  – both of which are awesome.  But did you know that in addition to books, the Library provides access to online articles, videos, ebooks, phone chargers, laptops, cameras, museum passes, lawn chairs, and more?   Library staff not only connect you with all these resources, but our librarians also provide research help.  This includes approaches to developing a topic, search strategies to use on our databases, tips on identifying scholarly vs. non-scholarly sources, citation guidance, and serving as a sounding board when you just need to talk through an assignment with someone. Visit our website to get in touch with us.


A screencapture of the Wheelock at Worcester Research Guide from the Wheelock College Library.

Welcome, Wheelock@Worcester MSW students!

I want to extend a warm welcome to our newest cohort of Advanced Standing MSW students in the Wheelock@Worcester program!  The Wheelock College Library is here for you as you begin your studies with intensive summer classes.

To learn about what we can offer you, take a look at the library guide we created.

A screencapture of the Wheelock at Worcester Research Guide from the Wheelock College Library.

Throughout your program, you will need to conduct research for your papers and projects.  Whether you are writing a policy analysis, a literature review, or a treatment plan, you will need to find outside sources of information.  The library is here to help you access the information you need!

Get in touch with us early to find out how we can help you with a specific assignment.  You can call us (617-879-2222), email us (library@wheelock.edu), or chat with us by using the yellow box on the library home page.  This kind of on-demand help is available every day that the library is open, from noon until closing!

You can also set up an appointment to meet with me, Maric Kramer, over phone or Skype.  In these one-on-one appointments, we’ll first talk about your assignment and your goals, and then we will work together to find the information you’ll need to:

  • inform yourself and others,
  • advocate for clients and communities, and
  • support evidence-based practice.

The Wheelock College Library has the people and resources you need to succeed in your MSW program.  So get in touch with us!  We look forward to hearing from you.


Social work students: Meet your new best friend!

Looking for trustworthy scholarly information in social work? Try the Encyclopedia of Social Work! Articles are written by experts and updated regularly, and they cover major areas of social work theory, research, policy, and practice. Here are just a few of the 400 articles you’ll find:

  • Alcohol and Drug Problems: Practice Interventions
  • Ecological Framework
  • Domestic Violence in the LGBT Community
  • Kinship Care
  • Intersectionality and Social Work
  • Welfare Rights

These articles would satisfy Goldilocks, if she were a social work student: they’re neither too deep nor too shallow, but just right.  Each provides a meaningful overview of a topic, and links to additional readings where you can learn more.

And best of all? The Encyclopedia of Social Work is free to you, courtesy of the Wheelock College Library.  This online resource is 100% available to all Wheelock College faculty, staff, and students:  no matter if you are in Boston or Worcester, in the BSW or MSW program, or are studying in a related field.

Check it out today!  You can access the Encyclopedia of Social Work here; from the Social Work research guide; or from the A to Z list of databases on the library website.

Image linked to the Encyclopedia of Social Work website.


Get research help over spring break!

Spring break is upon us!  Are you visiting a beautiful location? Are you working hard on a research paper?  Are you working hard on your research in a beautiful location?

In any case, the library has got you covered.  Librarians are standing by to help you to focus your topic, investigate excellent sources, and use citation styles like APA, MLA, and Chicago.  Get research help in person or remotely over spring break!  Check out our spring break hours here.

 


Getting started with research: Finding background information

So, you’ve just been assigned a research paper or project? If you’re like most people, you’re next step is to do some pre-research on your topic. After all, you want to get a sense of what it’s all about before you commit. You probably search Google and maybe read a Wikipedia article or two. The purpose of this is to gather background information and explore your topic before settling on a focused research question. But while Google and Wikipedia are handy tools, you might find yourself questioning the credibility of some of the information you find online or maybe your professor requires you to use scholarly sources. Where should you turn? To the library, of course!

CredoHome

Try a basic keyword search on your topic or browse books by subject.

The library has many print and digital resources to help you find background information. We often call these “reference sources.” One of my favorite reference sources is Credo Reference. Credo includes more than 800 unique reference titles and nearly 4 million full-text articles across a variety of subjects, making it a great place to start your research for almost any assignment.

You can access Credo Reference from the library homepage by selecting the “Databases A-Z” tab in the main search bar and selecting “Credo Reference (reference)” from the drop down menu. If you’re off campus, you will be prompted to login with your Wheelock username and password. Once you’re in Credo, you can do a basic search of your topic or browse books by subject. When you see something that looks interesting, click on the article title to read the article or email it to yourself for later. Don’t forget to grab a pre-formatted citation to get a head start on your works cited page!

CredoArticle

Don’t forget to email the article to yourself and grab the citation.

 

And remember that the library offers drop-in research help 7 days a week, from noon until close. We can help you get started with your research in Credo or any of the library’s databases.