For further assistance, contact the Maps, GIS, and Geography Subject Specialist.
Kathy Stroud: email@example.com 541-346-3051
Modern geography is a multifaceted subject that seeks to understand the spatial aspects of Earth and its human and natural complexities. Below are reference sources that provide an overview of topics and concepts in geographic research.
- Encyclopedia of Geography: 1224 entries covering physical geography; human geography; society and nature; methods, models, and GIS; history of geography; and people, organizations, and movements
- The Dictionary of Human Geography [also DOCS REF. GF4 .D52 2000]
- International Encyclopedia of Human Geography
- The Dictionary of Physical Geography [DOCS REF. GB 10 .D53 2000]
These encyclopedic dictionaries define terms used in geography and have short articles on theories, methods, and the history of geography. They are a good source of information for an overview of a topic.
The following indexes and databases are good places to search for scholary articles on research using a geographic approach. To find an online copy of any article, click . In some cases we may not subscribe to the online version, in which case check the UO Libraries Catalog to see if we have a print edtion. If we do not have either, you may request the article through Interlibrary Loan.
- GEOBASE: indexes research literature that includs geology, human and physical geography, environmental sciences, oceanography, geomechanics, alternative energy sources, pollution, waste management and nature conservation. IT covers thousands of peer-reviewed journals, trade publications, book series and conference proceedings. GEOBASE has the most international coverage of any database in the field.
- GeoRef: Although mainly a geology database, GeoRef indexes many physical geography articles.
- All Academic: Includes conference papers from the Association of American Geographers.
- Academic Search Premier: This is a general purpose database used in a wide variety of academic disciplines. It provides full text for thousands of peer-reviewd/scholarly journals as well as popular journals and news sources.
- Web of Science: The Web of Science is a citation index, meaning that you can see what articles cite each other. This is especially useful to see how 'important' a given article might be.
- You may also wish to browse the tables of contents of various geography journals. We have a guide to some of the most important.
Searching the Catalog for Books
Use the white search box on the library home page to search UO WorldCat for books, movies, maps, CDs, and more that are owned by the UO Library or other libraries throughout the world. Use the UO WorldCat Advanced Search link on the front page to search by keyword, title, author, or subject. If an item is not available in the UO Library, it can be borrowed for you from another library and delivered to the UO Library of your choice.
- Items available in Summit Libraries (Pacific Northwest) can be requested and arrive in 3-5 days.
- Items available in WorldCat Libraries (worldwide) can be requested via Interlibrary Loan and arrive in 7-10 days
Use the UO Local Catalog to search for books, maps, DVDs, etc. in the UO Libraries. Search by keyword, title, author, or subject.
Critical Evaluation of Resources
When looking for information, especially on a controversial topic, it is necessary to place the information source in the context in which it was created. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Who wrote and published the article? What background and biases do they bring to the subject?
- Why did they create and publish the item? The item may be an attempt to convey unbiased fact or a blatant effort to persuade.
- When was it made and published?
Critical Evaluation of Information Sources provides a more detailed overview of what to look for when evaluating an information source. It is especially appropriate for evaluating websites (which you won't be using for your assignment). However, the principles it outlines are also useful for evaluating newspaper articles, film, radio transcripts, books, and even "scholarly" journal articles and books that have already gone through a formal review process.
When doing research and writing papers it is important to keep track of the information sources you use and convey the sdources to your readers. Give credit where credit is due in ideas, and allow others to track down the source of facts you provide. You should find the page Citation Guides and Tools, especially the section on "Commonly Used Style Guides and Manuals" useful for creating consitant citations in your annotated bibliography.
Other Useful Links