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PS 4896 Social Revolutions: Find articles

Search tools, sources and suggestions for the Political Science capstone course


Political science research is first reported by researchers in academic journals and books. Sometimes, research with a general interest will get reported in magazines and newspapers and this can be a big help to understanding. But most research develops out of the news and out of public awareness.  As scholarly interest in a topic grows, there begins to be a group of scholars who begin to connect with each other in a pattern you can see.  The pattern emerges in who they cite or refer to in their work. 

This citation pattern is called an invisible college andit is important to get some awareness of who these scholars and their works are. Some scholars rise to prominence and have research that most other scholars refer to as the most accepted research.  These are the big names one should know.

So, there is a need to look in two different directions-- at the foundation works, the most accepted research, and the very new research to see who is being cited most now.

Use the research databases, below, that index, describe, and add subject terms to articles-- all of which makes it easier to find relevant material. Be sure to look carefully at the results and search other terms if you see them. The databases often provide the text of the article or a way to find the article through other library sources.

Social Sciences Citation Index - Best tool for finding articles in scholarly journals that scholars refer to most. The sources are all selected on the basis of their impact on scholarly publishing, so you can be confident about the quality of the publication.  This is an excellent tool for tracking down who has used a paper in their own research.  Google Scholar has a similar "cited by" link that leads to a much wider (less selective) set of material.  It is interesting to compare results.

Academic Search Premier This searches for both scholarly journals, magazines and newspapers.

Worldwide Political Science Abstracts - this searches for just scholarly articles.

Historicial Abstracts covers the history of the world from 1450 to the present (excluding the United States and Canada, which are covered in America: History and Life).


Summon logo Summon is a powerful, yet simple search tool that allows you to discover books, scholarly articles, films, music, dissertations, archival material and more in the Temple Libraries collection.



Google Scholar is a subset of Google Web Search that searches specifically for scholarly materials such as peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and technical reports from broad areas of research. By searching Google Scholar through Temple's library web site through the links above, you will automatically have direct access, both on and off campus, to subscription articles already paid for through the library. Just look for the "Find Full-Text @ TU" link within search results.

Keep in mind that Google Scholar uses rankings that will likely bring up highly cited material that may also be quite old to the top of the results.  You can use the year range to limit to more current results (labeled "anytime" towards the top of the search results page in Google Scholar and "Date" in Google Advanced Search.)


Additional Databases


LexisNexis Academic
Rich source of full-text newspaper and magazine articles, as well as law and medical sources.

Annual Reviews Online Critical reviews of the most significant primary research literature in 32 disciplines within the Biomedical, Physical, and Social Sciences.

ABI/INFORM Complete and Business Source Premier Use these business periodicals databases for topics related to the intersection of business and politics, such as globalization.

Access World News News sources, primarily newspapers, from most of the countries in the world in English.  LexisNexis Academic also has foreign newspapers and some foreign language sources.  Library PressDisplay has actual scanned images of newspapers from around the world, usually in the language of the country.

Columbia International Affairs Online (CIAO)

Edited site that publishes "a wide range of scholarship from 1991 onward that includes working papers from university research institutes, occasional papers series from NGOs, foundation-funded research projects, proceedings from conferences, books, journals and policy briefs.



To find journal titles Temple University has access to, use the link to "Find Full-text" in the databases, or else use Journal Finder to look up the name of a journal.

If Temple does not have a journal, order articles through Interlibrary Loan.

Reference Librarian

Rick Lezenby's picture
Rick Lezenby

Paley Library (017-00)

Room 315 (3rd Floor - West - by stairs)

1210 Polett Walk

Philadelphia, PA 19122