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U. S. History: Finding and Evaluating Sources

You will be prompted with a login page if you access some of these databases off-campus.
Your username is your EA username (your email address before the @) and your password is your EA password (same as your EA email password). 

Schedule a Meeting with Ms. Yu                     Visit the Annenberg Library website                     Book Request Form

Library Catalog

Google Scholar

Google Scholar Search

Note: you are allowed to search the web for sources. In fact, it may be a great way for you to find primary sources like government data, supreme court opinions, congressional laws, and historic speeches. Try your best to find the original source of information. For example, if a website quotes a speech given by President Nixon, try to find the speech in its entirety online. A good place to look for important speeches given by presidents is the president's Presidential Library and Museum.

If you are using Google search to look for secondary sources, please utilize the "Tips for Evaluating Websites" chart on the left. Be aware that most Google search results for a history topic will only provide links to reference or tertiary sources- sources that do not provide an analytical argument from a point of scholarship. In addition to the chart of the left, you should ask yourself:
Is this website:

  • from a university?
  • from a government organization?
  • from an organization that performs and publishes research?
  • From a museum, library, archive, or historical society?

If your secondary source that you found online does not fall under any of the above categories, double-check your source with your teacher or with Ms. Yu.

Recommended Databases

Utilize the filters on the left. JSTOR contains journals from multiple disciplines, so it's helpful to narrow your search by subject area. Utilize the filters on the left. "Scholarly Journals," "peer-reviewed," and "full-text" are often helpful. Make note of what type of source you're looking at. You don't want to cite a book review without having read the book! Click "POWERLibrary Resources" and pick which database(s) to use.
For many, EBSCO's eBook Collection and Academic Search Main Edition will be most useful.