Resources for ESL Research

About this guide

This guide provides students with recommended print and online resources for research projects in ESL classes. Use the tabs above to navigate through the pages of the guide.

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Vocabulary

  • Academic journal: A periodical written for students, teachers, researchers, or other professionals in a particular field. (See “Periodicals” and “Scholarly journal.”)
  • Article: A piece of writing published, with other articles, in a larger source, such as a periodical. (See “Source” and “Periodical.”)
  • Audiobooks: Books you can listen to. (See “Book on CD.”)
  • Author: The writer of a book or article.
  • Autobiography: The story of the author’s own life. (See “Author.”)
  • Biography: A true story about someone’s life.
  • Books on CD: Books you can listen to. (See “Audiobooks.”)
  • Borrow: To take home library materials for a short time. (See “Check out.”)
  • Browse: To look around the library to find books and other materials.
  • Call number: The number typed on the spine of the book. The call number is like the address for where the book belongs on the shelf, so it helps you find the book in the library.
  • Catalog: An online, searchable list of the books, periodicals, and other materials the library has.
  • Check out: To take home library materials for a short time. (See “Borrow.”)
  • Circulating book: A book you can check out of the library and take home. (See “Check out.”)
  • Circulation desk / checkout desk: The place in the library where you can borrow (or check out) library materials.
  • Database: An online collection of articles or other materials.
  • Due date: The date by which you must return the library materials you borrowed (or checked out).
  • Encyclopedia: A book or set of books with a summary of events and facts.
  • ESL materials: Books to help you learn to read in English.
  • Fiction: Stories and novels.
  • Fine: Money you might owe if you do not return library materials on time. (See “Late fees.”)
  • Keyword: A word describing your topic, which you use to search for library materials in the catalog or databases. (See “Catalog” and “Database.”)
  • ISBN: The International Standard Book Number, which is a unique number assigned to each edition of a book.
  • Late fees: Money you might owe if you do not return library materials on time. (See “Fine.”)
  • Librarian: The professional who answers your questions in the library.
  • Magazine: A kind of periodical, usually written for a general audience. (See “Periodical.”)
  • Non-fiction: True stories or facts.
  • Periodicals: Materials that are published on a regular schedule, like newspapers, magazines, and academic/scholarly journals. Examples include: The Los Angeles Times (a newspaper); Consumer Reports (a magazine); and Journal of Applied Psychology (academic/scholarly journal).
  • Reference desk: The place in the library where you can ask a librarian for help. (See “Librarian.”)
  • Reference materials: Dictionaries, encyclopedias and other resources that include definitions, summaries of events, and other factual information. You must must use reference materials in the library. (See “Encyclopedia.”)
  • Research guide: An online or paper list of resources or instructions that will help you complete your research for a particular class, assignment, or topic.
  • Reserve items: Materials your teacher selects for you to read in the library. Reserve items are available at Circulation, or online. (See “Circulation.”)
  • Resources: Materials and tools that lead you to information sources. (See “Source.”)
  • Scholarly journal: A periodical written for students, teachers, researchers, or other professionals in a particular field. (See “Periodicals” and “Academic journal.”)
  • Source: A book, article, person, website, or other place from which you get information.
  • Spine: The side of a book. Most library books have a label with the call number on the spine. (See “Spine.”)
  • Subject: What a book or other source is about.
  • Title: The name of a book or article.

Print Reference Sources

Reference books provide background information on a topic. Good resources on a variety of topics are available in the Luria Library Reference section. Ask a librarian for help finding the best reference source for your research.

Online Reference Sources

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.

Books

The library’s collection includes both print books and online ebooks.

Search the library catalog, or ask a librarian for help finding books on your topic.

Articles

The Luria Library’s databases provide online access to articles from periodicals (magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals). From off campus, you will need to log in using your Pipeline account information.

If your topic has to do with a current or controversial issue, try searching for information in this database:

  • CQ Researcher Online An excellent source of pro/con information, containing single-themed reports on issues in the news. Provides in-depth, unbiased coverage of both sides of controversial issues related to health, social trends, criminal justice, international affairs, education, the environment, technology, and the economy. CQ Researcher also includes a Pro-Con Topic List that can give you ideas about topics to research.

For articles from periodicals (magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals) on any topic, try these databases:

  • Academic Search Premier Includes articles from thousands of periodicals (journals, magazines, and newspapers) in all subject areas.
  • MAS Ultra – School Edition Contains full text for nearly 500 popular, high school magazines in a wide range of subject areas. All full text articles are assigned a reading level indicator (Lexiles). Also includes reference books, biographies, primary source documents, and images. Note: Mas Ultra – School Edition and several other EBSCOhost databases are also available through the Student Research Center interface, which is designed for students in grades 6 through 12.
  • Primary Search Includes the full text of more than 70 popular magazines for elementary school research, as well as a collection of photos, maps, and flags. All full text articles included in the database are assigned a reading level indicator (Lexiles). Note: Primary Search is also available through the Searchasaurus interface, which is designed for elementary school students.
  • Student Research Center (EBSCOhost)
    Searches several EBSCOhost databases at once, through an interface designed for students in grades 6 through 12. It is possible to pre-determine which content sources (e.g., Magazines, Newspapers, Biographies, Country Reports, Film & Video) will be included in the search, and to limit according to appropriate Lexile reading levels.

For news articles, try one of the newspaper databases listed on this page:

Websites

Finding good websites for college research can be difficult and time-consuming. Use the P.R.O.V.E.N. Test for Evaluating Sources to evaluate any websites you find.