Where’s ERIC?

9 10 2012

That’s what Doug asked when we conferenced today.

ERIC has fallen down and may not get up anytime soon. Kim, our personal class reference librarian at DH Hill (you can call/chat real-time many hours of the day with her) explained the whole back story when I called.  Evidently, ERIC documents are not necessarily peer-reviewed but often submitted by individuals from whom data was collected to prove that they were who they claimed to be and that information was published along with the other information on the submission form.  Ooops!

So options that Kim suggested are:
1) if the article you find in ERIC is prior to 2003 then the kindly reference librarians will find it on microfiche, make a copy, and email it to you.  Allow a couple of days.  Now for our purposes, the Action Learning Projects, that could be ancient history and not as relevant as, say, articles published in the last three to five years.  But if it’s what’s become a classic, as perhaps Lisa Delpit’s “Other People’s Children” Harvard Review article from the late 80s could be considered, then it is timeless and worth including in your research.

2) the handy “article” search on the Libraries homepage at NC State should actually be your first stop for research. Uses the highly touted Summon search tool.

3) Google Scholar will provide more scholarly, peer-reviewed articles that could be valuable.  To learn more about Google Scholar, click on the link on our library toolkit page (see tab at the top).

4) kick Google search into the advanced mode to find more specific information.  For example, do a search and to the far right on the search page results you’ll see a little gear that when clicked reveals “Advanced search.”  You can specify .edu sites, .gov sites, and more.  Here’s more on Google’s Advanced Search . . .

click gear for google advanced search

I also have to put in a plug here for making the most of your evolving personal learning network.  Jim Burke’s English Compainion Ning (Shannon has tweeted about this amazing resource) can be an incredible  goldmine of resources provided by kind and helpful teachers who remember what it was to be a grad student.  And someday you can pass along the kindness.

#ENGchat is a Twitter meetup for English teachers and #LITchat for anyone interested in literature and writing.

More you’d like to add?  Helpful tips? Your comments are welcome!