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About using Web Resources
Note: There are some excellent resources listed here, but please keep in mind that in general many Web-based resources must be reviewed for authority, accuracy and authenticity. Also, Web materials are time-sensitive - a page in existence one week may not be around the following week. We have tried to list reliable, stable websites, but these tenets are always good to keep in mind while browsing ...
Online Books Page
An index of books available online for free.
OWL Purdue Online Writing Lab (MLA)
MLA, 8th edition, Formatting and Style Guide
Voice of the Shuttle
A comprehensive meta-guide to humanities websites, emphasizing both primary and secondary resources.
"Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia, written collaboratively by the people who use it. It is a special type of website designed to make collaboration easy, called a wiki. Many people are constantly improving Wikipedia, making thousands of changes per hour. All of these changes are recorded in article histories and recent changes."
Use with care but it is a wonderful site to explore new authors and find web-links to author sites.
ipl2: Information You Can Trust
ipl2 is a public service organization and a learning/teaching environment. The site is hosted by The College of Computing & Informatics at Drexel University, and a consortium of colleges and universities with programs in information science are involved in developing and maintaining the ipl2.
Searching on the Web
Searching the web is tracked closely by the providers; such as Google, Bing, etc. Over time the providers know the results you have been going to and will start to ONLY return results they think you want. For example, if you primarily look at conservative political sites; eventually, the typical search engine will only ever return conservative political sites. You will never get any other viewpoint. Scholars are supposed to step back and look at all sides of the research subject. The practice of only returning what matches your search history is called a "search bubble." It is one of the great opinion polarizers of modern web culture. Search providers also sell "top spot" returns which also skew the results you receive.
There are a few steps you can make to minimize the research impact of these practices:
+ Make sure you look at all viewpoints in the first place.
+ Use a non-tracking search engine such as Duck Duck Go.
Check out the link Don't Bubble Us for a clearer explanantion!
Google Scholar is a place to start but make sure you use your professional indexes. A controlled vocabulary search is often more reliable & less overwhelming than a Google search.
If you use Google for a web search; use Google advanced which gives you more control over the results. If you limit by Domain you can see the results from goverment sites (.gov), organizations sites (.org), or education sites (.edu). You can also limit by when the site was last updated.
Evaluate sites the way you would evaluate a book or other resource. Who sponsors it? When was it last updated? Who wrote it? Who thinks it is a good site? Typing "Link: " then the sites address in the Google search bar should result in a list of sites that links to that particular web-page. Who points to it will tell you something about the usefulness of the page.
Google Advanced Search for Primary Sources
Primary Documents on the Web
National Archives | America's Historical Documents
American historical documents from the National Archives; includes transcripts and high-resolution scans.
100 milestone documents from American history, presented in high-resolution scans. Brief summations of the historical relevance of each document are presented. The documents chronicle United States history from 1776 to 1965.
Primary Documents in American History
Collections of documents, lithographs and images, and digital exhibitions presented from the Library of Congress. The collections span from the Revolutionary War period to post-Civil War Reconstruction.
A Chronology of US Historical Documents
Offers full-text transcriptions of seminal documents in American history, dating from the early 17th century to present day. Includes presidential papers and biographies, as well as Inaugural Addresses and State of the Union Addresses.
Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1836-1922 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress.
Pertinent Resources on the Web
Internet Public Library's History Resources
ipl2 is a public service organization and a learning/teaching environment. In January 2010, the website "ipl2: information you can trust" was launched, merging the collections of resources from the Internet Public Library (IPL) and the Librarians' Internet Index (LII) websites. The site is hosted by Drexel University's College of Information Science & Technology, and a consortium of colleges and universities with programs in information science are involved in developing and maintaining the ipl2.
Library of Congress American History Digital Collections
A digitized archive of several collections of documents, artifacts, and media documenting the history of the United States from 1492 to the present day. Special topics, such as military history, city and regional histories, and African-American history, are also represented.
The British Broadcasting Corporation's History website provides a wealth of multimedia resources exploring British and ancient world history. It offers an in-depth section on both World Wars, as well as coverage of select recent historical events.
Featured Website: Office of the Historian, Bureau of Public Affairs United States Department of State (Foreign Relations)