Resources for Communication Research

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About this guide

This guide provides students with recommended resources for conducting research on topics related to Communication. Use the tabs above to navigate through the pages of the guide.

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The language you use to describe your topic may be different from the language used by scholars in the field of Communication. Try using some of the following words in your search:

  • Body language
  • Gesture
  • Intercultural communication
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Man-woman relationships
  • Nonverbal communication

Reference Sources

Print Reference Books

Reference books are a good place to begin your research. These resources are available in the Luria Library Reference section.

  • The Handbook of Communication Science — R 302.2 B496h 2010
  • 21st Century Communication: A Reference Handbook — R 302.2 E11t 2009
  • Encyclopedia of Communication Theory — R 302.203 L779e 2009
  • Encyclopedia of Communication and Information — R 302.203 S323e
  • Language and Communication: A Cross-Cultural Encyclopedia — R 403 F494l

Online Reference Books

The library also subscribes to some online reference sources, including the following general reference book. To access this resource from off campus, you will need to log in with your Pipeline account information.

  • Credo Reference: Contains the full text of nearly 600 encyclopedias, dictionaries, bilingual dictionaries, and other reference books.


The library’s collection includes both print books and online eBooks. Search the library catalog for books on your topic. Your search results will include articles as well. Limit to books by choosing the appropriate box from the menu to the left of the results.


Articles from periodicals (journals, magazines, and newspapers) often provide current information and scholarly research on a topic. To find articles on topics related to Communication, search the following database:

    Communication and Mass Media Complete: Provides full-text articles from over 450 journals in communication, mass media, and other closely-related fields of study. Also provides cover-to-cover indexing and abstracts for more than 570 journals, and selected coverage of nearly 200 more. Many major journals have indexing, abstracts, PDFs and searchable cited references from their first issues to the present (dating as far back as 1915). Includes over 5,400 Author Profiles, providing biographical data and bibliographic information for the most frequently searched for authors in the database.

Evaluating Websites

Figuring out whether the information you find online is credible enough for college research can be challenging. Use the P.R.O.V.E.N. Test for Evaluating Sources to determine whether the sources you find are credible:

  • Purpose: The reason the information exists. Is the purpose to sell, to entertain, to inform, to teach, or to persuade? Do the authors and publishers/sponsors make their purposes clear? Is this source designed for general readers or academic readers?
  • Relevance: The importance of the information for your needs. Does it relate to your topic? Does it meet the requirements of your assignment? Is it too basic or too advanced?
  • Objectivity: The reasonableness of the information. Is it fact or opinion? Is it biased? Do the authors use strong or emotional language, or leave out important facts or alternative perspectives?
  • Verifiability: The truthfulness and accuracy of the information. Where does the information come from? Can you verify it in other sources? Are there citations or links to other sources? What do experts say about the topic?
  • Expertise: The source of the information. Who are the authors, publishers, or sponsors of the information? Are they experts, or has the information been reviewed by experts? Is it posted on a personal website or blog?
  • Newness: The timeliness of the information. When was the information published or posted? Is it up to date? Is your topic in an area that requires current information (such as technology or current events), or will older sources work as well?

Professional Organizations