Rutgers University Libraries Your Poli Sci Paper: Finding Scholarly Sources
The Basics: "Restricted Access;" Off-Campus Links; E-Reserves; Book Delivery; Becoming an 'Expert' User Citing Your Sources
Finding Books: Library Catalogs Finding Articles plus: Indexes The Media Specific Issues Statistics
RUL Home Page IRIS RUL Indexes Ask a Librarian

The Basics

This is a guide to the most basic resources for finding reputable information on political science topics. For much more information see the Political Science Research guide.

Restricted Access

Many of the resources listed in the sections below are marked Restricted Access. You should have no problem connecting to these from any networked computer on campus. However in order to use these from off-campus you must log in with your Rutgers NetID. For instructions see the Libraries' Remote Access to Library Resources.

Off-Campus Links

If you are not on-campus, use these links to connect to Rutgers' library resources. If you haven't already logged in with your NetID [your pegasus username and password] these links will take you to the login page.


To get to readings that your instructor has placed on Reserve in the Library, click here. Once you get to the Lookup box, the easiest way to get to the right list is to search by the Instructor's name.

Getting Books From Other Rutgers Libraries

If a book that you need is not available (not owned/checked out) at the Dana Library, but is available from another Rutgers Library, you can request delivery of that book to Dana by bringing up the record for the book in IRIS and clicking on tbe Deliver/Recall button. Show Me

Book Not Available/Not Owned by the Rutgers Libraries?

The fastest way to get a copy of a book that is not owned or not available (checked out/on Reserve/missing etc.) at the Rutgers Libraries is to request it through E-Z Borrow. E-Z Borrow books are normally received within about five working days. Tell Me More

If a book is not owned by the Rutgers Libraries and is not available via E-Z Borrow, you can place an Interlibrary Loan request. Tell Me More

Becoming an 'Expert' User

Want to maximize your use of Library resources? Check out Searchpath, the Libraries' interactive tutorial.

Citing Your Sources

Researchers in the social sciences would most likely be asked to use APA (American Psychological Association) style when citing sources used in a research paper. The APA Publication Manual is available at the Dana Library Reference Desk. The Writing Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison also has an excellent introduction to APA Documentation that will give you the basic information you need to create APA citations and reference lists.

Not sure when you need to cite something? Check out the Plagiarism Guide

Remember that plagerism is a violation of the Rutgers University Policy on Academic Integrity for Undergraduate and Graduate Students and could result in your dismissal from the University!

Finding Books: Library Catalogs

IRIS is the online catalog for all the Rutgers University Libraries except the Newark and Camden Law Libraries. Use IRIS to find out if the Rutgers Libraries have the specific books or journals that you need, or to locate books on topics that you're researching. Show Me How

Newark Law
Camden Law
Rutgers Law library materials are not listed in IRIS. So if your project is in some way law-related, be sure and use the Law library catalogs.

Finding Articles plus: Indexes

Social Sciences Full Text
The basic index for finding articles in the social sciences. Indexes over 550 of the core, English language journals in social science disciplines including public administration, political science, public welfare, urban studies, sociology and social work, and women's studies. Indexes many journals back to 1982 and, beginning with 1995, includes many full-text articles.
Off-Campus Link Restricted Access

Need More?

While Social Sciences Full Text will usually give you what you need for a basic research paper, indexes that focus on specific disciplines may considerably expand your research base.

Worldwide Political Science Abstracts
1975- The main index for political science. Indexes over 1,300 journals in political science, international relations, public policy and related fields.
Off-Campus Link Restricted Access

The Media

Getting the News

Many newspapers allow you to register and receive free access to at least a portion of that day's published articles.

The New York Times
The Washington Post
The Star-Ledger

It Happened in the Last Ten Years or So

Access World News
Access to the full text of over 600 U.S. and over 700 international newspapers.
Off-Campus Link Restricted Access

Old News

Historical New York Times
Allows you to search and display the full image of articles published in the New York Times back to 1851. The two+ most recent years are not included, use Access World News.
Off-Campus Link Restricted Access.

Finding Information on Specific Issues

CQ Researcher
Extensive collection of weekly reports from Congressional Quarterly. Each report offers data, a variety of opinion, and a bibliography on a specific 'hot' issue.
Off-Campus Link Restricted Access

Finding Statistics

Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006
The basic annual U.S. statistical compilation. You can also link to tables from the 2001-2005 editions. Print copies of latest edition of the Statistical Abstract are also available at the Dana Reference Desk.

U.S. Census Information

American FactFinder
Select query elements to create maps and view data tables based on Census 2000, the 1990 Census, the American Community Survey, and the Economic Census. See definitions of the major geographic units for which census data is available.

Natalie Borisovets (
John Cotton Dana Library
June 12, 2006