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September/October 2004 Web News
  
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Favorite Web Sites: Writing Style Guides

The web sites featured this month have been critically evaluated and selected by the IU Northwest librarians as well as a group of academic and public librarians across the United States who compile a yearly Best Free Reference Web Sites List  for the American Library Association  . Here is a list of selection criteria initially created by the MARS Best Free Websites Task Force to choose these sites. The Library hopes our readers will find these web sites useful for locating reliable, accurate and authoritative information on the Internet.

This well organized web site produced by librarians at Indiana University Bloomington features online handouts on such topics as citing electronic sources in MLA and APA style and evaluating traditional print and web information resources. These documents are available in HTML, PDF and Microsoft Word formats. The web page also provides valuable links to instructional resources from IU Bloomington's Writing Tutorial Services web site. Some of these online documents include citing sources in MLA and APA style, how to write a thesis statement, plagiarism, using outlines, writing book reviews and creating resumes and cover letters.

NoodleTools combines NoodleBib, an interactive MLA-style bibliography composer, and NoodleQuest, a multiple-choice template of questions to develop appropriate search strategies for a research project. Another section called NoodleLinks is a "database of academic bibliographies" that appears to be in the formative stage and NoodleBoard is a group of forums where users can ask questions and share ideas. NoodleBib has an extensive list of citation types (31 items) including electronic formats. The NoodleQuest form asks the user questions that address the type of information sought and the level of the user's expertise. The user chooses the options and obtains guidance as to where to start in a search for information on the internet. NoodleQuest is a great tool for the novice or younger user who needs help getting started on research and NoodleBib certainly simplifies the process of creating a MLA-style bibliography. (Summary used with permission of the MARS Best Free Websites Committee)

Online! provides citation styles for the total range of online information: World Wide Web site, Email message, Web discussion forum posting, Listserv message, Newsgroup message, Real-time communication, Telnet, FTP, and gopher sites. Detailed descriptions and examples of each are given for MLA, APA, Chicago Manual of Style, and CBE. The guide is quite helpful in defining distinctions between citing the whole site versus citing one page or part of a site, citing personal versus professional sites. The various types of web publications are clearly explained. This site would be most useful for students of all ages working on papers that involve the vast and varied elements of the online environment. (Summary used by permission of the MARS Best Free Websites Committee)

The Sources web site was prepared for the instruction and use of Dartmouth undergraduate students and is set up so that it can be used as a handbook to consult when writing papers. The preface includes an excellent discussion of why the student must cite sources, with clear examples of the different kinds of plagiarism. Quotes from Dartmouth's Student Handbook make the point even more clearly. The large "Examples" section demonstrates the format for bibliographies and footnotes, following the APA, MLA and Science citation styles, as well as MLA's note style. A bibliography of resources is provided for those wishing to use other styles. There is a good alphabetical site index as well as a table of contents. A FAQ section provides some examples of special problems, such as works of art and computer programs. It is important to note that electronic sources are well represented in this very useful writing resource. (Summary used by permission of the MARS Best Free Websites Committee)

Discover Word Origins With the Oxford English Dictionary Online

Due to an IU Libraries system-wide subscription, the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) online version was recently added to the IU Northwest Library's expanding electronic database collection.

The Oxford English Dictionary remains the world's leading authority on the development and history of the English language. According to its web site, the OED Online provides the following features:

  • Access to the 20 volume Second Edition and the three Addition Series volumes, plus at least 1,800 new and revised entries provided each quarter
  • Entries can be displayed various ways (e.g. pronunciations, variant spellings, etymologies and quotations)
  • Words can be found by simple keyword or Boolean searching
  • Search for quotations from a specific year, author and/or work
  • Locate words that have come into English from another language
  • Search pronunciations as well as accented and other special characters
  • Find first cited date, authors and works
  • Perform case sensitive searches
  • Compare revised entries with entries from the Second Edition to see how the language has changed and how new scholarship has expanded our cultural and linguistic heritage.

IU Northwest students, faculty and staff can access the OED Online from any on campus computer or off campus  through a VPN connection by going to dictionary.oed.com/entrance.dtl .

Academic Search Premier Recently Added to the Inspire Databases Subscription

Over the summer, the IU Northwest Library upgraded Academic Search Elite to Academic Search Premier. As one of the Inspire databases offered through EBSCO, Academic Search Premier offers indexing for over 8000 publications with nearly 4600 of those titles available in full-text. Nearly 7000 journals included in this database are peer reviewed with over 3500 of these in full text. PDF files to 1975 or further are available for over 100 journals and searchable cited references are offered for more than 1,000 titles. Moreover,  Academic Search Premier provides extensive full-text coverage in chemistry, biology, education., humanities, physics, psychology, sociology and ethnic studies.

IU Northwest students, faculty and staff can access Academic Search Premier through IU Northwest campus computers or off campus via a VPN connection. Just go to the IU Northwest Library's Electronic Information Page and select the All Databases Listed Alphabetically link under the Electronic Resources  heading. At the next screen, choose the Inspire Databases link.  At the next page, click the EBSCOHost Web link. At the EBSCOHost main menu, select Academic Search Premier or click the Continue button since Academic Search Premier is the default database at this menu.

 

, Library News Web Editor