- Gale Virtual Reference Library is database of encyclopedias, almanacs, and specialized reference sources to help find background information and define your topic.
- CQResearcher: In-depth reports on “hot” news topics written by journalists. Shows multiple sides of an issue. Examples include: Robotic Warfare, 3D Printing, Space Program, Managing Nuclear Waste, and Domestic Drones.
Using Wikipedia for Academic Research - this is a very helpful 3 minute tutorial on using Wikipedia to locate background information.
|Topic||The benefits and risks related to genetically modified crops.|
|Key Concepts||Genetically modified organism (GMO)||Benefits||Risks|
|Related Keywords||"genetically modified foods" |
"genetically engineered plants"
|"agricultural productivity" |
|"health risks" |
Then combine them using AND and OR
- AND narrows your search by looking for articles with all of the words
- OR broadens your search by looking for articles with any of the words
- Academic Search Complete: A comprehensive and scholarly database containing magazine, newspaper, and journal articles from across disciplines.
- Opposing Viewpoints in Content: Brings together viewpoint articles, contextual topic overviews, government and organizational statistics, biographies of social activists, court cases, profiles of government agencies and special interest groups, newspaper and magazine articles, as well as links to more than 1,800 reviewed and subject-indexed web sites.
- AIAA: full-text access to all AIAA journals and meeting papers from 1963 to the present.
- IEEE Xplore: full-text access to IEEE & IET journals, conference proceedings, & current IEEE standards.
- Compendex: contains more than 11 million citations from more than 5,600 journals, reports and conference proceedings covering fields of engineering and technology.
- SPIE Digital Library: resources for the subject areas of optics, photonics and imaging.
- OnePetro : Petroleum Engineering
- Scifinder : Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
No full-text? Click the button to see if it is available in another database or in print in the library.
Start here: www.lib.utexas.edu > Research Tools > Library Catalog
- To find a book on your topic, start with a keyword search.
- When you find a good title, you can follow the subject headings for more books on the topic.
- When you find the book, browse other books in the same area for similar resources.
- Take note of the location of the book, we have over 10 libraries.
- The call number will help you locate the book on the shelf
- Take note of the current status: If there is a date listed instead of "AVAILABLE" that means the book is checked out to another person. You can request the book back by clicking on the Pick it Up link.
Some terms are more common in the scientific literature (e.g unmanned aircraft) while others are more often used by the general public (e.g. drones).
- unmanned remote-controlled aircraft
- unmanned aircraft
- unmanned aerial vehicle
- unmanned aircraft systems
When searching on popular topic your first search may bring back too many results. I recommend adding additional terms to focus your results.
A good place to look for alternative terms is under the subject terms:
- high resolution imaging
- digital cameras
- aerial surveillance
- imaging sensors
- image analysis
- imagery system
Read lots of articles and take note of new or related concepts: you may need to do several searches to get the best articles.
2. Look for background information (I won't use these sources in my cited reference list)
- Wikipedia - encyclopedia (authors are anonymous, vetted (maybe) by the public )
- Gale Virtual Reference Library (written by experts, vetted by editors)
3. Find articles using the library's amazing databases:
- Academic Search Complete - multidisciplinary
- Opposing ViewPoints - multidisciplinary
- AIAA - aerospace
- IEEE - engineering
- library catalog
- not finding enough material on your topic
- having problems finding the full-text of an article
- can't find a book or are having problems with an e-book
- letters to the editor,
- new briefs,
- review articles,
- book reviews
Peer Review - 3 minute video from NCSU Libraries explaining peer review. Peer review is not without flaws. See also: Retraction Watch
Evaluate Books and Articles - this decision tree helps you evaluate scholarly and non-scholarly books and articles
C.R.A.P. test for evaluating research sources
Engineering Library - Science Instruction Librarian
Tel: (512) 495-4646
Already have a citation? Learn more at How to Find an Article from a Citation.