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Common Research Questions | Bismarck State College

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Common Research Questions

Where do I start to find the information I need?

Click here for some basic tips to help you get started. We encourage you to stop by, call us, or email us for help. You can also set up an appointment with a librarian for some individual assistance. Questions are our thing!

How do I find books?

The best place to start is by searching the BSC Library Catalog to find books (and other formats) by topic, title, author or keyword. There are video tutorials available for further assistance.

How can I find out if you subscribe to a specific database?

Check out the A-Z list of databases page.
Don't know the name of the database you want? The top of the page has subject filters.

How do I use the databases?
Here are some tips to help you get started:
  • Once you are logged into a database, use the Help screens and tutorials to get great information and tips about how to use it.
  • Check out the How-To Guides for databases.
  • Ask a librarianin person, by phone, or by email! We are glad to help.
What if I have a reference question?

Questions are our thing!  Ask a librarian in person, by phone, or by email. We are glad to help.

What is the difference between a magazine and journal?

The word "magazine" usually describes a popular periodical like Time or People or Sports Illustrated.  The word "journal" is usually used to describe a scholarly periodical that is written by experts, e.g., American Journal of Botany.  Journal articles tend to be longer than magazine articles and include extensive citations.

What is a refereed or peer-reviewed journal?

Many scholarly journals use a process of peer review before publishing an article.   As part of that process, scholars in the author's field or specialty critically assess a draft of the article.  Only articles that pass the review process are published.   This kind of review helps to ensure that published articles reflect solid scholarship.   Journals that use this process may be called "refereed journals" or "peer-reviewed journals."

How do I use the Find it @ BSC button that appears in my database search results?

We've prepared an instruction sheet on using this database feature.

How do I access online resources?

This guide explains how to login to the library's online resources.