Archive for the ‘Resources’ Category

Resource: History in Dispute

January 9, 2012

When researching current issues, our NWC students have always appreciated the point-counterpoint structure of CQ Researcher and Opposing Viewpoints. That same discussion format is now available in the History in Dispute series.  This time, though, the topics are ones of historical importance, rather than contemporary ones.

History in Dispute allows you to look at differing perspectives on major historical issues. Coverage is broad, including issues from antiquity all the way through the late 20th century.  Some examples of essays are:

  • Were the Crusades Motivated Primarily by Economic Considerations?
  • Did Adolf Eichmann Receive a Fair Trial?
  • What was the Effect of Large Dams in the American West?

To use this tool, simply enter keywords for your search in the search box at the top of the page. You can also see all the titles in the series by mousing over the book covers; clicking on a specific title allows you to browse the topics covered in that volume.

Religion in America

November 14, 2011

Are you curious about religion in America?  The US Religious Landscape Survey provides answers to many questions about contemporary religious beliefs and practices.  The survey covers religious affiliations, frequency of prayer, church attendance, scripture interpretation, and more.  All the information is presented using eye-appealing graphics, and the data is easy to decipher.

The US Religious Landscape Survey is presented by The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, which itself is a site worth visiting.  The Pew Forum looks closely at how religion intersects with politics and public issues, gathering its data from extensive nationwide surveys.  One feature that may particularly interest students is the section on topics; Pew reports on the various sides of current issues such as evolution and bioethics, showing how and why religion shapes citizens’ views.

New Encyclopedias Tab

September 6, 2011

We recently added a 4th tab — Encyclopedias — to the search box on the library home page.

This tab is a great place to begin research on any topic.  Just enter a term in the search box on the tab to search the majority of our electronic reference collection. While this tool does not search everything we have available, it does search a broad selection of titles in the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.

After you do a search, you’ll be directed to a page of results.  Simply click any title to read the full article.

You may notice how the results come from a variety of different encyclopedias.  The Gale Encyclopedia of Science will have a more general coverage of the topic, while Chemistry: Foundations and Applications will provide more in-depth insight into the chemical processes of global warming.

Also on the Encyclopedias tab is a link to Guide to Reference Resources by Subject:

This guide compiles the best print and electronic reference resources for each discipline.  Be sure to check out this guide when starting your research; it will show you some excellent reference sources.

We hope this new addition to our site helps you access our reference resources more easily and conveniently. If you have any questions, please ask a librarian

Writing a paper? Need citation help?

April 27, 2011

Covers of APA, Chicago, and MLA style guides

It seems many students feel that correctly formatting citations is one of the more difficult parts of writing papers. If you need a little help getting your resources formatted correctly for your final papers, check out our web site’s Citing Sources page. You’ll find guides for the 3 main styles (APA, Chicago, MLA) and links to some great citation resources.  You can also send us a quick question by using the Meebo widget on the right.

Seeing All Sides

October 21, 2010

If you are working on a project about current issues or contemporary ideas, the Opposing Viewpoints series is a great place to begin your research.  These books contain multiple essays that reflect a wide range of perspectives on one single topic.

We’ve recently added new titles in this series:

We have over 100 titles in this series; click here to see a complete list.

Need help with citations?

September 22, 2010

After you’ve spent considerable time researching and writing a paper, you get the ultimate reward:  Compiling and formatting your list of citations!  If you need help with this, we have formatting guides on our web site for APA, Chicago and MLA styles.

And a special note to all of you students in Introduction to Biblical Studies:  We have a page that shows how to format some of the most-used reference sources in that area.

We hope these tools help!  Let us know if you have any questions about references and citations.

Ramaker’s Tools for Bib Studies

December 4, 2009

This fall the librarians have been busy helping students who are working on research papers for Bib Studies.  The entire wall of Bible Commentaries has been heavily used as well as other Bible Reference books.

Bible Commentaries:

  • Anchor Bible
  • New Interpreter’s Bible
  • Word Biblical Commentary
  • Bible Speaks Today
Bible Dictionaries:

  • Anchor Bible Dictionary
  • New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible
  • International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

Not only are these resources  helpful when writing a Bib Studies paper but they are helpful when preparing a Bible Study, a Sunday School lesson or doing  personal Bible study.  For example, if you are looking at one of the prophets such as  Jeremiah or Ezekiel you could look at the article “Prophet’s in Israelite Society” in the New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible to help you understand  the role of a prophet.  Or you could use a Bible commentary to help you understand the meaning of a particular scripture passage.   So please stop by and use these outstanding Bible Reference tools.

Note:  Bible Commentaries and Dictionaries can’t be checked out.

Note:  Please do not write or make personal notes in these books.

2009 Word of the Year

November 18, 2009

Today the New Oxford American Dictionary, part of Oxford University Press USA, announced its choice for Word of the Year:  unfriend.  According to Oxford, unfriend is a verb that means, “To remove someone as a ‘friend’ on a social networking site such as Facebook.”

While the word certainly has a new meaning, it’s not really a new word.  In fact, when searching the Oxford English Dictionary Online, references will be found for the verb “unfriend” back in the 17th century — well before the Facebook era. Other words in the running for this year’s top word included birther, green state, deleb, hashtag, intexticated, funemployed and netbook.   If you’re wondering what any of those means, check out this blog post by Oxford.

If you’re ever curious about the development of a word or phrase, give the Oxford English Dictionary Online a try; this authoritative source tracks the history and usage of the English language.

Finding Journals at Ramaker

November 11, 2009

Finding journals can be a little tricky.  Sometimes Ramaker has journals in print on our shelves, sometimes we subscribe to a single journal in its electronic version and sometimes we have access to a journal through a database subscription.

If you wonder whether we have access to a certain journal, your best first step is to visit our Journal Finder.  (It’s the link at the very top of our Quick Links list on our home page.)


Here, type in the name of the journal you are looking for.  NOTE: The search function here is for journal titles; entering an article title or article keywords will not return relevant results.

For example, let’s say you were looking for the Journal of American History.  Type that title into the search box.


On the results screen, scroll to your title.  The list below the title shows Ramaker’s holdings.   Journal of American History is available in Academic Search Premier, E-Journals from EBSCO, History Cooperative, JSTOR and in the stacks at Ramaker.  Be sure to pay attention to the dates; not all issues are available in all locations.


If you have any questions, please let a librarian know.

A New Look for BioOne

February 4, 2009


BioOne, one of Ramaker’s full-text biology databases, has recently acquired a new look and enhanced features. If you are familiar with BioOne, you will certainly notice the new look:


Do note the search function is in the top right corner, and the advanced search link is right below it. If you are interested in looking at what titles are available or in scanning the contents of just one publication, click the Browse link in the center of the page.

One enhancement to BioOne is the ability to create an account and save your searches. Even better, BioOne now has new titles in its Open Access collection, increasing the number of full-text journals available to Ramaker students and faculty.

If you have any questions about the new design of BioOne, please contact one of the Ramaker librarians.


February 3, 2009


LexisNexis is a full-text database providing information from U.S. and world newspapers, business publications and legal publications. It’s a great resource to use when you are researching any of the following:

  • Current and recent events, both domestic and foreign
    LexisNexis has full-text archives of over 350 newspapers from around the world, some going back for 25 years
  • Businesses
    LexisNexis includes business and financial news, actual SEC filings and industry reports.
  • Legal issues
    Both primary sources such as Supreme Court decisions and legal statutes and secondary sources such as legal news and analysis are available. 
  • Health information
    Because it indexes so many newspapers, magazines and journals, LexisNexis can be a good spot to find recent medical news stories.

Looking for full text? Now, it’s easy!

January 15, 2009

This year Ramaker Library has been in the process of implementing a new piece of software called WebBridgeWebBridge is an open-URL link resolver, which is a fancy way of saying . . . “now, it’s easy to find full text!”

As you search in the myriad of online databases that Ramaker Library has to offer, you may find a citation or abstract that looks promising for your research needs.  But, now you have to figure out where to get the full text of the article.  Enter WebBridge.

While in a database, you will see a link called Find It @ Ramaker Library.  When you click on the link, it will take you to your options for full text of the article (if we have access to the full text).  Otherwise, you will receive the option to request through interlibrary loan.  Even making an ILL request is easier with WebBridge because you don’t have to fill in the article data.  WebBridge puts the data into the form for you!




 We hope you will take advantage of this great new resource!  If you have any questions, contact any library staff member.


Database for Nursing Students

January 15, 2009

Nursing students

CINAHL with full-text is an important electronic resource for Nursing faculty and students.    It indexes journals in nursing, allied health, biomedicine, and healthcare with over 580 journals available in full text.

As a nursing student you can find interesting articles on many topics such as caring for premature babies, emergency room and trauma care, treating teens with diabeties, or operating room personnel.

For your next nursing assignment, use an article from CINAHL w/ full-text!

Just 3 of the over 500 journals available in CINAHL

Just 3 of the over 500 journals available in CINAHL

Remembering our Veterans

November 11, 2008

It’s Veterans Day today, a time we acknowledge the service of the men and women who have volunteered in the armed forces in America. Every Veteran has a story about his or her time of service – what it involved, what they experienced, what happened after. The Library of Congress has been collecting these stories, whether they are in oral interviews, letters, photos or personal memoirs.

To search their extensive collection, visit the Library of Congress Veterans History Project. It’s a great way to learn more about the people who served our country in this way and to learn more about the time in which they served.

Veterans History Project


November 3, 2008

Want to add authentic art images to your research project?   Then checkout ARTstor -a digital library of more than 500,000 images of paintings, sculpture, architecture, photographs, manuscripts, fabrics, costumes, cartoons, posters, etc. Art work is available dating as far back as 2000 years BC and from geographic locations around the world.

Note:  for best results, use Mozilla Firefox as your browser and turn off your

Pop up Blocker.

If you want to Save groups of images, login and set up a username & password.

If you want to Download images, open an image by double clicking on it, click the save icon, accept the Terms & Conditions of Use, agree to ARTstor as a safe website and Save.

ARTstor – a great library resource for Northwestern students and faculty!