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HIST 4990 Senior Seminar (Reason): Getting Started


Welcome to the UGA Libraries!  There is a lot to learn about doing research in a large academic library, but the most important point to remember is that help is available and you should never hesitate to ask for it.  The library staff can be as much of a resource to you as the books and databases.

In addition to the librarian specifically assigned to this class, you can get help in many other ways.  You can ask questions in person at the Reference desk at each library facility on campus, contact a subject specialist librarian, or sign up for an individual research consultation.  You can also telephone, email, text, or chat online with a librarian.  More information about getting help is available here.

Most Important Resources

The best place to begin your research is the UGA Libraries webpage, which provides links to all the resources and tools the Libraries support for your work.  Here are some of the most used features.

Class-Specific Research Guides: in an ideal world, a librarian would be available to serve you at any hour of day or night.  In the real world, the next best thing is a guide designed especially for the subject material and writing assignments that your class will be working on.  The guides are listed alphabetically, so scroll down to the HIST section for this class.

GIL-Find: GIL is the catalog of the UGA Libraries holdings.  Library holdings exist in many formats:  print, electronic, microform, and audiovisual material.  GIL-Find is the best place to find books on your topic, but it doesn't list individual journal articles.  

Your Library Account:  Log into GIL-Find and use the options under "Access My Library Account" to renew books online, check the status of GILExpress requests, and get the off-campus password for article databases. If you can't get into your account, call Access Services at (706) 542-3256. 

GALILEO: the UGA Libraries provide access to several hundred different databases in addition to GIL.  Most of these databases cover shorter publications like journal articles, but some include books, historical documents, and other publication types.  You can find both primary and secondary sources in GALILEO, depending on which databases you search.  If you know the name of your database, you can select it from the alphabetical list; if not, try the list organized by subject.

Multi-Search:  this resource allows you to search some (but not all) of the library databases simultaneously.  It saves you from having to switch from one database to another and retype your search each time, and it can be very helpful for interdisciplinary topics that no single database covers thoroughly.  But it can also be overwhelming because your searches may return a very large number of results, and it omits special search features offered by some individual databases.  The search box for Multi-Search appears on the UGA Libraries webpage.

Off-campus access:  you should be able to use most library databases from on-campus locations.  If you are not on campus, many databases will require you to log on to prove that you are a UGA student.  Most of the time you can do this with your MyID, but you may need the GALILEO password in some instances.  To get the password, log into your library account. The password changes every semester.