Transcript - Introduction to Criminal Justice & Security Research - Jun 4 2019
Video Link: https://youtu.be/Dz6s8LpmqF0
>> TAYLOR LEIGH:
Hello, and welcome to this Introduction to Criminal Justice and Security Research webinar. My name is Taylor Leigh, I am the Liaison Librarian to the School of Public Policy and Administration here at Walden. This webinar is designed as an introduction to the Walden Library and more specifically, it's resources for Criminal Justice and Security students at any degree level -- undergraduate, Masters and doctoral.
A lot of the resources we discuss will be helpful to you as you progress through your program. So if you're following along on your computer, I recommend creating bookmarks in your browser so you can easily navigate back to these resources in the future. With that being said, let's review our objectives.
Our first objective is to learn how to find Course Readings Guides or just Course Guides and Assignment Guides. We'll also see to access the Criminal Justice and Security research homepage. This is a page that I curate with all kinds of subject specific resources, so I definitely want to make sure you know how to get there. We’ll also look at a database search. We'll do a basic database keywords search in a criminal justice specific database. Then finally, we'll learn how to access other library resources and how to contact us to get more help at the end.
Before we check out the research pages, I'm going to navigate away from the PowerPoint. I'm going to come over here to my web browser. And here I am at the library's homepage.
Hopefully you have had the opportunity to come here before. If you haven't, that's fine, this is what it looks like. And I just wanted to ... you know what, I’m getting mixed up. Sorry.
I'm going to go to the Blackboard, first, because I want to show you what your experience might be, especially if this is your first course or your second or third course, you're just getting into the swing of things. I want to show you how you know what you need to access the library.
Here I am in CRJS 8002, this is the foundation the doctoral study class. And I'm going to come over here to the syllabus and scroll down past the course description and outcomes to course materials. So this is where they will tell you what text you need for this class. So under course text, that's where you're going to see the required course textbook. In this case, it is the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. The library, unfortunately, cannot provide access to textbooks for courses. So, you will need to purchase them either through the Walden bookstore or a vendor of your choice. And you notice, when we scroll over this resource, it does not highlight.
However, if we come down, we will see the Course Readings list, and all of these do highlight. And that indicates they are hyperlinked, and we can click on them. So this particular course is cross listed with a few others. But you can click on the CRJS 8002 link, and it will take you directly to the Course Guide. And we'll see a different way to get here in a moment, but I want to show you that you can do it that way.
Course Readings Guides is going to include a lot of required readings for your courses, but not all of them. So that's important to keep in mind. There will be some readings that are directly linked in your Blackboard classroom. So I want to show you an example of what it’s talking about. So I'm going to go back here and do it to the course homepage, and I'm going to come down and go to Week 4 and then go to Resources.
Okay. So here we have our required readings. So you'll notice, as we scroll over these resources, some of them become highlighted, indicating that they are hyperlinked. Others do not. For those that do become highlighted, you can just click on those and it will take you directly to those readings. The ones that don't, you'll notice that they have a note at the bottom that says Retrieved from the Walden Library Databases. This is your indication that you'll need to go to the Course Guide to access this reading.
Okay. How do you do that? Well, we saw one way that we could do that straight from the syllabus. But you can also do that from the library's homepage. So here I am again. If we want to access Course Guides, we're going to click on this big button over here that says Course Guides. Then we will use our course code and number to track down that Course Guide. We were looking at CRJS 8002, so I will click on C then select CRJS, then scroll all the way down to 8002. And here we are back at Course Guide that we accessed earlier. And here you will have all of those other readings that are not directly linked in the classroom.
Now, within the Course Guide, you might also see Assignment Guides. So for some course assignments that require specialized library instruction, we created other guides, separate guides called Assignment Guides. Now, there will not always be an Assignment Guide for every assignment. But whenever you do have an assignment that instructs you to conduct some kind of research in the library, it's always a good idea to check to see if there is one available. Here, you access these over here on the left-hand side. This one is for the Week 3 discussion of this course. So I'm going to click on that, and it will give you an overview of the assignment instructions at the top. Then as you scroll down, it'll talk to you about how to complete each individual part of that assignment. How to search databases, and this particular assignment, they want you to find international, peer-reviewed journals in the Walden Library.
Unfortunately, the Assignment Guides themselves are not linked in the Blackboard classroom, and there's no indication in Blackboard that there is an Assignment Guide available for a particular assignment. Like I said before, if you do have an assignment that involves library research, it's always a good idea to just come to the Course Guide the cover to the left to see if there is an Assignment Guide available.
For a common course assignment like the one we're looking at now, you might be asked to go to the library and find a peer-reviewed article from a subject specific database. In these cases, how do you know which database to look in? That question brings us to the research homepages, and I’m going to navigate back to the library's homepage, now. And research homepages are sites that provide access to a wealth of subject area library resources, including the most relevant databases. So where can we access those?
The easiest way is in this box that says Subject Resources. You click on the drop-down menu that says Select a Subject. Then, select the relevant subject homepage. So I'm going to go to the Criminal Justice and Security page. And here we are. I want to point out that you can easily jump from one research homepage to another by clicking in this drop-down menu at the top left. Oftentimes, if your topic is interdisciplinary in nature, you will have to explore databases from other subject areas. So keep that in mind.
All of these research homepages are going to have this same general format, so you'll see a search box right here at the top. And then as you move down the page, you'll see a series of drop-down menus.
I want to talk to you for just a moment about this search bar here. You can search many kinds of subject specific resources using this search box. It's especially good for exploratory research at the beginning stages of the project. But the downside is that it doesn't allow for too much precision, in terms of how you search.
So in general, I recommend looking for scholarly literature in individual, subject specific databases -- and we will see some of those in a moment. This approach will help you keep track of where you have searched and how you have searched, and in many cases, it will return more relevant results. But this search box up here at the top is good for searching broadly, because what it is actually searching is all of those databases that we have designated as being relevant to criminal justice or security. But again, you don't have the same capacity to limit, refine your search in really complex ways.
So moving down the page, we see a menu here for databases. We'll come back to this in a moment. Journals, books, government websites, all of these are going to be tailored to Criminal Justice and Security. Then, we get to the research help section. Here you will find resources to help you with some of the more common questions students have about the library and then some research basics menu such as choosing a topic, choosing a database, choosing search terms, database search strategies, evaluating different kinds of resources and peer review.
Then I also have posted some short videos, a library orientation for SPPA students of here, as well as demo search and Political Science Complete just to demo a database search. Then we get to the other menus, we have one for literature reviews, tests and measures, theories and theorists, statistics and data, upcoming webinars, then finally, residency materials for those doctoral students who do go to residencies.
So I want to come back up here to the databases menu and open that up. Now the first question when we're talking about databases is, what is a database? I think we all have a general understanding of what a database is, but essentially, it is a collection of related data organized and made easily accessible. More to the point, databases are where you're going to find those peer-reviewed articles that you need for your course assignments or your research project.
So when you click on these databases menu, you will find a list of recommended databases for Criminal Justice and Security. But you can also select a subcategory by clicking in this drop-down menu within the menu. So we have different lessons for criminal justice, forensic psychology, legal, and military and security. So keep that in mind.
The databases that you see pop up here, there will be five or six of them. These are the Best Bets for each particular subject area. However, to see an even more comprehensive list of databases, click down here on the view all criminal justice databases.
So I'm going to open up this first one, Criminal Justice Database, in a new tab. That will bring us to a pretty standard database search page, advanced search page, I should say. Now, this particular database is a ProQuest database. That is the company that provides access to this database. The actual database is called Criminal Justice Database. But it is a ProQuest database, so that's why you see ProQuest of here. But if you're ever writing in with a question about a database, you want to specify exactly which database you're in, not just ProQuest, because they provide access to a whole range of other databases, as well.
So you can see we have two search boxes here, and I am going to go ahead and add one more by just clicking this add a row link. These searches are important because they are going to influence how they enter in our search terms. We're going to do this by entering one concept per search box. So one concept does not necessarily mean search term. You can have many search terms that represent the same concept. But at the beginning stages of your project, or if you're just starting out searching, or really whenever, you want to break down your topic into the different concepts involved. So I'll show you an example.
For our example research topic today, we're going to look at recidivism among white male ex-convicts diagnosed with a mental illness.
So most of the time, you can start by just taking some search terms straight out of that research topic. So I'm going to do that, I'm going to type in recidivism in the first search box. That's our first concept. White, I'll do whites, and the second ... well, let's do white males in the second search box, and then mental illness in the third search box. So this is our basic set up.
Now before we search, you want to scroll down and check this box that says peer-reviewed, because that is the kind of literature that you're looking for 99% of the time.
You can see the full text box is checked by default. You can uncheck that, and that is an appropriate thing to do if you're at the doctoral stage and you're collecting literature for your dissertation. Unchecking that is going to help you search comprehensively. However, if you're not in a doctoral program or if you're still doing coursework, you're going to want to leave that box checked, because you do need literature much more immediately.
So I'm going to go ahead and search, and I'm getting 461 results for this search. Now that's a good number, that's actually quite a lot. Just to give you a ballpark idea of what I'm looking for, whenever I do a search, I'm looking for somewhere between 50 and 200 results, because that represents a manageable number to go through, select the articles I want and disregard the rest.
If you're ever getting much more than 200, like in our case now, you want to think about ways to limit your search. If you're ever getting fewer than 50, you want to start thinking about ways to broaden search.
Right off the bat, I know I want to limit my results a bit more. And the first way I'm going to do that is by date. So going to scroll down and look to the left and we have a publication date limiter. And I’m going to drag this bar, first you would drag it up to the appropriate decade, and then when it updates, you can specify a year within the decade. So I'm going to start at 2014. And that brings us all away down to 199. So this is a good amount of results, this falls between 50 and 200, so this might be a list that I would start browsing through and picking up those articles of interest.
Despite this being a good amount of results, I do want to show you how you might get more results. So let's say we were only getting 15 results or zero results. In those cases, you would definitely want to take some actions to help you get better results. So what I'm going to do is come over here and click on Modify Search. This will take us back to that search page. You always want to do that as opposed to clicking back on your browser, because if you do, it will erase your search terms.
Okay, so a couple things we can do. We are going to add some synonymous terms to the search terms that we already have to improve our results. The first thing I'm going to do, I’m going to take off the "m" and the word recidivism and replace it with an asterisk. This is called a truncated search, and essentially, it's going to give us results for any variation of the term that you truncated. So for this, we would see results for both recidivism and recidivist. So it's just a little shortcut, but it can be even more helpful in other situations.
I'm also going to add some other relevant terms. So when we're thinking about recidivism, we might also think about repeat offenders. So going to use that same trick, repeat offen and then I will put that asterisk, so we will see things for repeat offenders and repeat offenses. I am going to enclose this term in quotation marks. And that tells the database that you want to keep these words together. I’m going to add one more. "Habitual offen*" with the asterisk again inside quotation marks. You will notice I've separated all these terms with the word OR and capitalized it. You don't have to capitalize it. You used to have to capitalize it, that's why I do it out of habit, and it helps me keep things straight when looking at my search boxes, but you don't have to. So that's the first search box.
So in addition to white males, I also want to do white men, and then I’m going to enclose these in quotation marks. And in addition to mental illness, I also want to do "mental disorders" OR "mental health" OR "mental disabilities." So all of these terms represent the same concept of mental health, but adding all these possibilities is going to improve our search results.
We can also select a specific date range on this initial page. I'm going to go ahead and select 2014 and search again.
Thirty-three ... okay. [LAUGHS] Let me go back here. That wasn't supposed to happen. I'm going to take out these quotation marks, I think that might be that different databases work slightly differently. I think that might be throwing off this one. Sorry about that. Let's see ... okay. And you can see as I type these things out, it is recommending other search terms to me underneath, and that can be really helpful. Okay, now we should be back on track, I will hit search again.
Okay, I'm getting 545, I think we started with 199. So this is just a quick example to show you how many more results you could find by just including some additional search terms to each of those concepts. Now, if I really got 545, I would try to limit the search a bit more, but we're just using this as an example.
Now once you have a usable amount of results, you can start scrolling through them. So I'm just going to start going down, and you will see a few different things in terms of full text access. A lot of times you will see an option for full text PDF. And clicking on that is going to give you a PDF, which you can read or download and save in your files. Let me see if we have any other examples here. Another example you might see as full text HTML. This one doesn't actually say "HTML," but that will give you the full text your web browser.
And another thing you might see which are not seeing in these results is a button that says Find @ Walden. Some of you may have seen this before. What that means is we do have that article in our collections, but it lives in a different database. So if you ever see that, you're interested in that result, click on it, and it will take you to whatever database it lives in and give you the full text there.
Okay, now for those articles, you might also find things that we don't have full text access to. And if you ever do find things like that that you really need, you can request those through Document Delivery Service. And I'll come back to that later in the presentation.
I'm just going to click on this first result to show you an example of a detailed record. So I can click on that. You can see here you have the authors’ names and they're all hyperlinked. If I were to click on those, it would bring up all of the other publications of those authors. Same goes for the actual journal that this is coming from. And you can even navigate to the specific volume and issue to see what else came out in the issue. In this case, it's putting these straight into the PDF full text. But a helpful thing to do is click on Abstract/Details. Especially if you're unsure if the article is actually relevant for you, read this paragraph, the abstract, because that's going to tell you in a very concise form what the article is actually about.
You can scroll down and review subject terms right here. These are also very helpful, they can help you think of other search terms to use in future searches. Then you have all of the other details about this article below.
Another tab at the top is for References, and this is a really good way for you to identify other research that might be relevant for your topic.
Okay. Now in addition to this, you do have some other tools over here on the right. You can download the PDF on the right here. You can click this cite link, and that's going to give you the citation for this article in a variety of formats, including APA. You can email it to yourself or you can print it out, you can save it, the whole range of things.
So I'm going to go back to our search results. Here we go. I just want to show you also here on the right this option that says Save search/alert. If I click on that, I have a couple of different options. Save search, that's going to save it in a folder in this particular database, and you can set up a personal account, it's free. Once you do that, you'll be able to make unlimited folders for your different research products in this database, so you'll be able to access them from any computer. That's an option. You can also create an alert if this is a particularly good search, set up an alert. It will email you whenever new content is added that meets search criteria. Then finally, here at the bottom, get search link. That will give you a permanent link that you can use to get back here to this search at any time.
So let's say you have looked in some of the subject specific databases. You're not finding literature on your topic. What do you do? In these cases, it may be helpful to use Thoreau. Thoreau is our multi-database search tool searches most, but not all, of our databases. Let me just pause very briefly, I just want to make sure we're all on track. Nobody is telling me they can't see me, so that's good.
When you search in the search bar on the library homepage, that is what you're using, you're using Thoreau. And this is how you can tell, there is this search button above the search bar that says Thoreau and it is checked.
So there are pros and cons about Thoreau. The advantages, it is multidisciplinary, it searches very widely. It will show you lots of different results and lots of different formats -- so books, articles, newspapers, etc. It is generally good for getting a sense of how much literature is out there on a particular topic. However, it is searching across different subject areas, so you're going to see a lot of results that probably aren't as relevant as you'd like them to be. Another limitation is that it does not show you everything we have in our collection, unfortunately. It's not appropriate as the only database you use to search, because it doesn't search comprehensively. This is especially true at the graduate level.
So I just want to run a quick search to show you how results you see in Thoreau might differ from those that you get in a subject specific databases. So you can just begin by searching for any search term in this main search bar. I like to come to this advanced search link underneath, and I'm going to click on that. It will bring up this search page in a new tab. And I’m just going to replicate that search that we did before, and I'm going to do that by simply copying and pasting these terms.
Okay. Same thing, we're going to limit to peer-reviewed. I'm going to leave the full text box checked, and I'm going to limit to a date range, 2014 to the present. And I am searching. So I think we got 545 from that last search. And this is giving me 8. Okay, that's weird. Let's see what, why that would be. That's very strange.
So what this is telling me is that most of our content on this particular topic is coming from non-EBSCO databases. Content in ProQuest databases, for example, might not show up when you do a Thoreau search. So that is something to keep in mind, although this seems pretty odd.
Let me try one more search. Okay. I just experimented a little bit, that brought us up to 64. That's still not too many. So normally what you would see is far more results than we were getting in the subject specific databases. That is not the case here, so this is surprising, even to me. But in many other cases, you can come to Thoreau if you're not getting great results in these subject specific databases.
Let me navigate back to the library homepage, and I want to show you two very helpful resources you have access to: Quick Answers and library guides. Now I mentioned before this button above the main search bar has Thoreau checked. But you can toggle over to this other option that says Search Everything, and this will, the text within the search box changes. It says "Search library skills, Quick Answers, articles and more," and this is where you can input anything you have a question about. So I'm using "peer-reviewed" as an example. So I'm going to type that in, press enter, and this is what your results page is going to look like. You're going to have three columns. The column on the left over here is showing you content that we have in guides. The central column is our Quick Answers, and over here on the right, we have results coming from Thoreau.
So this first result under Quick Answers is “What is peer-reviewed?” That looks like a good one, I'm going to click on it. And this is what a typical Quick Answers will look like. It will give you a very succinct answer to whatever you have a question about, and then down here at the bottom, it’s going to link out to related information.
Over here on the left we have guides. And for each of these results, you’re going to see two hyperlinked texts. The first one is going to be bolded, and that is actually a section of the second hyperlink. So we have this one that says limit to peer-reviewed articles. That's actually a section of our larger guide called Verify Peer-Reviewed. So I clicked on the second one and you can see you're going to be provided much more information on peer review as well as, it will walk you through how to verify the peer review status of articles that you find.
So, lastly, I just want to make sure that you know how you can reach us if you have questions about anything we've gone over today, or anything else you may encounter. The best way to do that is to click Ask a Librarian up here in the top, right-hand side of any library page that you're on. When you do that, you'll see the various options you have for contacting us. You can email us, chat us during certain hours, call in a question. And then, if you are at the doctoral level, you can schedule a research appointment, which is a 30 minute sit-down with a librarian, where you can receive individualized help with your particular research need.
I also wanted to give you all my personal email address, but first, we navigated away from the PowerPoint. I just want to browse through the content here, I just want to show you everything in here is hyperlinked. So I do think it would be helpful to download this if you would like to do that. But down here at the bottom of this slide, you can see my personal email address which is firstname.lastname@example.org, and SPPA is the School of Public Policy and Administration. So if you ever have any questions about anything, feel free to contact me there, I'm usually very responsive to email. Or of course, you can submit a question to that Ask a Librarian main portal.
So that concludes what I wanted to cover in this session. Just to review, we learned to access Course Guides and Assignment Guides. We saw how to access those research homepages and in particular the one for Criminal Justice and Security. We learned to do a basic search in a database, Criminal Justice Database. And we learned about other library resources and how to reach out for help.
So I just want to thank you very much for attending today, and I'll go ahead and stop the recording and take your questions.
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