Just as the online catalog provides access to the books in the library, periodical indexes and abstracting services are access points to the contents of periodicals, magazines, and journals - all of which are interfiled alphabetically by title. Indexes and abstracting services list the contents of periodicals by subject and frequently by author.

An index gives citations (i.e.: article title, periodical title, volume, page, and date) to periodicals in which desired articles will be found.

An abstracting service provides a brief summary of articles in addition to citations.

These indexes can help you find articles in periodicals by subject. Examine various indexes -- notice the list of abbreviations in the front of each index to help you interpret the exact title of a periodical.
... realize that some indexes include books, pamphlets and other materials
... accept the fact that all indexes differ -- then begin.
... remember that no library will have everything listed in an index; allow for time to visit other libraries or request items via Interlibrary Loan, if necessary

First:   Choose the appropriate index.

In the list, you will find indexes listed under various subject headings. A specific index may be listed under more than one subject heading, if appropriate.

Second:   Identify relevant citations.

Imagination should be used in determining subjects under which citations may be listed. Start with the subjects specific to a topic and proceed to more general subject headings if necessary. If your subject is broad, you may find useful citations under more specific subjects.

Third:   Determine if citations are available in our library.

As relevant citations are identified, you must check the serial holdings in the Library's online catalog in order to determine whether the needed periodicals are part of the Library Collection. All periodicals are located on the 3rd and 4th floors. Current issues are located on the 3rd floor and older bound issues are located on the 4th floor. If a specific periodical article is vital to your research, but it is not available in this library, it may be obtained via Interlibrary Loan from another library if you have allowed a minimum of two weeks. (Note: This service is available to cadets and Faculty/Staff only.)

Fourth:   Ask for assistance at the REFERENCE/INFORMATION DESK if you are having problems.


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This page last updated 25 January 2012


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