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Sociology: Overview

This guide presents a general overview of library research for students enrolled in Sociology classes at Olympic College.


In Sociology it’s important that students are able to convey their ideas and demonstrate their understanding of the material in writing. Since there is not an English pre-requisite for Sociology courses, this LibGuide will assist you in researching paper and project topics further.


Some things to keep in mind when writing papers or completing projects for a Sociology class:


·         Academic and reliable sources are preferred (if not required). Such sources include scholarly peer-reviewed journals, books, research studies, encyclopedias, etc. These sources have been written by academics in the field and reviewed by others in the same discipline.  If you are required to use academic sources then you should avoid newspaper/news magazine articles, blogs, Wikipedia, and internet websites.


o   Journal articles can be found by using the databases available through the library – Academic Search Premier, JSTOR, and ProQuest (but be sure to put limiters on your search in order to ensure that your search pulls up scholarly, peer-reviewed articles).


·         Avoid websites that are not government or university based (.gov and .edu). Some organization websites might provide reliable data but it is important that you do a bit of research to determine the purpose of the organization and if they hold any political slant, bias, or agenda.


·         If your source does not have a date of publication or an identified author you should avoid using it.


·         Presenting info or ideas that not your own is academic theft – plagiarism. When you present info that you obtained from other sources you must make reference to those sources by using parenthetical citations and a reference list. These parenthetical (in-text) citations and your reference list are to be in APA format (see far right tab).


·         Papers are to be double spaced, 1 inch tabs, and written in 12 pt font.


·         If you have questions about the assignment contact your instructor ASAP!