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URBS 428: Research Seminar in 21st Century Urbanism: Secondary Sources

Resources for Urban Studies 428, Research Seminar

Journal articles, papers, & reports

Every research question will require different databases for the literature search, depending on the questions asked.  In addition to general databases like Google Scholar, JSTOR, or Scopus, consider these specialized databases for the relevant field.



Use the  Franklin catalog to search Penn Libraries holdings.

To search libraries beyond Penn, search WorldCat.

To acquire books not held at Penn, use ILL, BorrowDirect, or EZBorrow.

Tips for Keyword Searching:

When searching for books in Franklin, it is important to think about how to phrase a search. Try to think of different words for your concept. For instance, information on prisons will also be found using the keyword "corrections". Without thinking of synonyms, you will arbitrarily limit your search results.

Use ? at the end of a word to allow for different word endings
Example: immigra? will find all records that include the words immigrants, immigrant, immigration etc.
Use quotation marks when you want two words together
Example: "new york?" or "african american?" will find all records including those phrases.
Use AND when you want both terms to appear in the record.
Example: immigra? AND "los angeles"
Use OR when you want either term
Example: black? OR "african american?"
If you want to find books about something, but you are not sure of subject headings, or if you want to find multiple subject headings, use the skey command. (subject keyword)
Example: skey philadelphia? -- will find books about Philadelphia, instead of books published IN Philadelphia.
Use parentheses to construct more complex searches.
Example: (mexican? or latino?) AND (california or "los angeles")

Remember: if you choose to do a subject search, you must use Library of Congress subject headings. Try a keyword search, and then select Full view to see the relevant subject headings.