What are they good for? These databases help you locate relevant articles in scholarly journals, magazines and newspapers. In many cases, the full text of the article is available right in the database. When that is not the case, always click on the gold InfoLink button to see if we subscribe to the periodical in print or online. Chances are good that we do.
We subscribe to many databases or online indexes. Those we've listed below tend to focus on current events, controversial topics and commentary (opinion pieces) that may be hard to locate elsewhere.
What is a bibliographic style? When professors assign a term paper, they usually expect you to provide a list of the sources you consulted in writing the paper. They may also expect you to cite your sources at the point in your paper where you refer to them, either as a footnote or an in-text citation. They will expect you to provide a bibliography or works cited list at the end of the paper.
In order to recognize what it is you've cited, whether it is a book, a magazine article, or a newspaper article, they expect your citations to be in a standard format. Sometimes the professor will tell you which style to use. Modern Language Association (MLA) and American Psychological Association (APA) are two popular styles used on campus, but there are others. Other times you are free to pick the bibliographic style, as long as you use it consistently.
If you are not already familiar with a particular bibliographic style, it can be frustrating to learn. Hopefully the guides and other tools below will help ease that frustration. Besides the items listed below, see also the Books tab at the top of this page, where we've listed some style guides, both print and e-books, available in the UI Libraries.
Citation Formats. A guide from UI Libraries with examples of the most common citation forms for APA, Chicago and MLA styles.
EasyBib. An automated citation generator on the web. Free if using MLA style.
EndNote Basic. A web-based citation management and bibliography tool. UI students can register for a free account.
Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL). A great site with tutorials, exercises and examples of APA and MLA style.
University of Iowa Writing Center. Schedule an appointment with a tutor for help with your writing project.