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STS 3700 — History of Technology Research Session

Just for fun

FREE Citation Management Software

  • RefWorks site (Login) can help you manage your footnotes & bibliography on the web. Easy to use, interfaces directly with MS Word to create footnotes & bibliographies
  • Key points:
  • Don’t forget to install Write-n-Cite on your PC.  It’s in the Tools menu
  • Also don’t forget to move items out of the “Last Imported” folder into the folder you create for your course

Logging in from Home

  • Need to use Passport York or bar code number & PIN from library card to authenticate as a York user
  • Information here on logging in
  • Remember: Use the library web page or this blog post for the link as it will prompt for login

Background Information

My topic: history of steam railways — possibly in Canada.

  • pick a topic that interests you
  • narrow your topic
  • get a angle/perspective
  • have a plan B (role of technology in Blitzkrieg)

Do a search in The York Catalogue:

  • by title: The citizen-powered energy handbook : community solutions to a global crisis
  • by author: pahl greg
  • by journal title: Scientific American
  • by keyword:
    • rail* and steam and canad*
    • blitzkrieg
    • blitzkrieg and war and (tanks or planes or technology)
    • blitzkrieg and technogy and nazi
  • Google Book Search is a great tool for finding relevant books
    • steam railways canada social forces
  • RACER to get books we don’t have, which may be somewhat more important for this course. It usually only takes a couple of days to get the book if another ON university has it.

Finding Articles

All the article databases are similar. Try searches like these.

  • steam and (rail or railways or trains) and  history
  • blitzkrieg
  • blitzkrieg and war and (tanks or planes or technology)
  • blitzkrieg and technogy and nazi

A list of the best databases for general science topics

**Remember, the age of the article isn’t that important for historical topics

  • Scholar’s Portal: mostly full text, good general source of articles
  • JSTOR — full text of various science & science studies journals, best source for STS articles
  • History of Science, Technology & Medicine — most comprehensive and complete source for historical topics, covers books and journals. No full text directly in the database.
  • Research Libray — another good general source, lots of full text, somewhat better for history
  • Academic OneFile — good general, full text
  • Expanded Academic– good general source, good for book reviews, mostly full text
  • Web of Science — Very good coverage of all humanities & social sciences, good for book reviews & for citation tracking

Newspaper Archives (use OR in the searches!)

Using the Internet Wisely

  • Using Google as a scholarly research tool:
    • Find a good portal site
    • remember: who, why and when
  • Wikipedia — solid source of links & basic info, not academic or 100% reliable Wikipedia as a starting point. Remember that for a controversial topic there can be a lot of back and forth and “conflict of interest” changes

Office: Steacie 102H

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