Here's one for the grad students, advanced undergrads or faculty. Our dissertation databases have thousands of fulltext online PhD and Master's dissertations and theses done at hundreds of different schools.
While you can always read the dissertations online, try scrolling to the end and examining their list of works cited. You'll see the scholarly sources they used, as well as discovering primary sources you didn't know existed or that could be used in certain ways.
For a great start to the new semester, Alkek Library offers drop-in orientations at the beginning of each semester. If you are new to Texas State and have never been in the library, all you need to do is check the schedule for the time and then just meet at the Reference Desk on the 2nd floor as you enter the main lobby. There is still time left to take advantage this open walking-tour.
If you prefer to tour Alkek Library from the comfort of your home or dorm room, we have an online tutorial as well as still photos and mp3 audio tours for you to enjoy at your leisure.
If you have a question, need directions or want to get a jump start on your research, you can stop by the Reference Desk, call us at 245-2686 or get online help using the Ask-A-Librarian service. We offer multiple ways of online help. You can chat with us using your preferred chat client by adding us to your contacts, or you can chat w/a librarian using the many Ask a Librarian widgets placed on various pages throughout the library website. There is an email option, and you can also schedule an individual consultation. New this semester we now offer the option to meet online with a librarian using videoconferencing software.
Also new this semester we have added an additional way to contact us! Now you can also TEXT-A-LIBRARIANby texting # 512-761-8398. We are using a Google Voice number, so we can receive offline message in case you send it after hours.
We also offer workshops on using RefWorks, an online resource for bibliographic management. These are held in our classroom 101, downstairs from the main lobby. Our workshop schedule is updated periodically, so check back often for other classes.
Many of our research resources are available remotely. Access to many journal articles, newpapers, magazines are available online. If you want to know if we have access to your favorite newspaper or magazine you can search for it by using the Periodical List. Or, if you already have a topic you need to research, you can use one of the subject research databases. For more information about using the databases, see this research guide. There are also other research guides arranged by subject which offer you the best resources for your research topic.
Other popular library resources are Reserve and E-Reserve. You can check Reserve by professor or course for materials your professor has placed there for your class to use. Sometimes your textbook will be on Reserve. Other things like chapter readings, articles, videos, or old tests may be on Reserve. If your professor uses the E-Reserve service, they will give you a password to access the materials.
The final tip for a successful semester: Don't pay for journal articles! If you find an article you need, but the library does not have a subscription, then you can utilize the Interlibrary Loan Service to get a copy of the article. This service is also available for books and other materials. It is a free service.
Welcome to Texas State and remember: librarians are here to help you succeed!
Interesting podcast with the Co-Founder of Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales from the Chronicle of Higher Education's Tech Therapy. Wales discusses Wikipedia's popularity among students and ways faculty have incorporated Wikipedia into the classroom (both good and bad).
First, I should introduce myself. My name is Tara Spies and I am the newest addition to the Alkek Library Information Literacy Instruction Team. I am a Reference/Instruction Librarian and my subject specialties are art/design, communication studies, and technology. If you have any questions about research in those areas you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or want to request an instruction class in any of these areas with me please don't hesitate to do so.
It is the beginning of the spring semester so it is probably a good time to learn about new and improved research tools before your research gets underway. If you don't already know about Refworks, you will wish you had once you know that it is a online citation and bibliography tool that you can use to help you organize and format your citations/references for your research papers in whatever writing style you are supposed to use (APA, MLA, etc.). You can create a free account and familiarize yourself with some of its basic features. You can use their tutorial or attend one of our upcoming workshops on how to use Refworks. Once you get the hang of it you will see what a helpful tool Refworks can be for citing sources in your paper and for your reference/bibliography page that you put at the end of it.
Refworks just released a new version of Write-and-Cite that will let you download and use it while offline. The online version is still available for when it is more convenient for you. You can read about more new enhancements to Refworks in their January 2008 Release Notes