Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Oxford Bibliographies Online

The other day I was in Dr. Brad Green's course discussing library research. I realize that conducting research in and outside of the library is a daunting task today because of the wealth of information that is out there in print and online. While I can help to find articles or books on a particular topic it is a much more difficult task to perform a comprehensive lit. review or provide an authoritative bibliography on a subject because of the confusing web of information that is out there. Professor Green asked this question, "How do you find a list of the best resources on a particular topic?" In all honesty I did not have a great answer for his question. With Oxford Bibliographies Online perhaps I do have a good answer for this question. Below is a description of the resource.

"Oxford Bibliographies Online is now available to Union University faculty and students for a trial period.

What is OBO?

In recent years, the explosion of original research and its increasing accessibility through new technologies is a blessing for researchers—but also a tremendous challenge. Whether a researcher is working on a doctoral dissertation, doing initial research for a book, or preparing an undergraduate term paper, it is harder and harder to know what sources to consult.

That is why Oxford Bibliographies Online (OBO) was created. It is a tool designed to help busy researchers find reliable sources of information quickly by directing them to exactly the right chapter, book, website, archive, or data set they need for their research. It is a springboard for new research that allows for fluid movement between texts and databases within a given institution’s collection and beyond. It is a starting point for organizing a research plan, or for preparing a writing assignment or syllabus. The style and approach is accessible to students, but the depth of coverage makes it of great use to faculty as well.

How Does it Work?

OBO is a library of disciplined-based subject modules. In each subject module, leading scholars have produced a literary guide to the most important and significant sources in an area of study they know best. The guides feature a selective list of bibliographic citations supported by direct recommendations about which sources to consult. Each topic has a unique editorial commentary to show how the cited sources are interrelated. The citations promote discoverability as they link out to the sources via your library collection or through Google books and more.

OBO brings to online research the quality assurance and authority that you expect from Oxford University Press. All articles receive multiple peer reviews and editorial board vetting to provide reliable and balanced coverage.

Articles are regularly updated by their authors so that information in this resource is always current and accurate. In addition to updating existing articles, new topic guides are added on a regular schedule to expand the scope and extent of each subject module in the library. Depending on which Research Guide you are using, you will find subject-specific information and links for to help you locate articles, books, databases, writing and citing tools, subject websites, professional organizations, RSS feeds and more."

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