Exciting Addition to the Library’s Collection

February 28, 2007

Sidney Poitier’s memoir, The Measure of a Man (PN2287.P57 A3 2000) has recently been added to the library’s collection.  This book was picked by Oprah Winfrey as her 56th book club selection. To find other Oprah Book Club selections check out the following web site: http://www2.oprah.com/obc_classic/obc_main.jhtmlYou can also join an online book discussion group or subscribe to the Oprah Book Club Newsletter.


CQ Researcher Online

February 28, 2007

CQ Researcher is often the first source that librarians recommend when researchers are seeking original, comprehensive reporting and analysis on issues in the news.


·         In-depth, weekly reports with unbiased coverage of health, social trends, criminal justice, international affairs, education, the environment, technology, and the economy.

·         Each reader-friendly report includes an introductory overview; background/chronology; assessment of the current situation; tables/maps; pro/con statements from opposing positions; and bibliographies of key sources.

·         Full-text access to reports dating back to 1923. PDF files are available for reports from January 1996-present.

·         CiteNow!™, a unique tool that generates a citation for the CQ Researcher report in your choice of APA, Bluebook, Chicago, or MLA style.


·         Find a topic, browse issues by topic.

·         Background and supporting factual information.

·         Read up on current issues in the news.

·         Bibliographies/key sources leading to additional related research.

·         Recent issues covered:  “New Strategy in Iraq”, “Television’s Future”, “Slow Food Movement”, “Future of the Catholic Church”.

To access CQ Researcher Online, visit the H.M. Briggs Library web page and click “Research Databases”.  Scroll down alphabetically to CQ Researcher and click.  For more information, a research consultation, or off-campus access stop by the Library Information Desk or contact a Reference Librarian at:  (605)688-5570, or E-mail the SDSU Librarians .

Library Databases Vs. Internet Search Engines (or, how to make Google your last stop for research).

February 22, 2007

Sure, we’ve all done it – received a research assignment and gone straight to Google to see what’s out there.  That is – we’ve all done it until receiving a less than pleasing grade on that assignment and wondering – where did I go wrong?   The first step is to consider the world of information available to you beyond Google.  Or rather, more importantly, before Google.  That’s right – authoritative, credible, current, chock-full-of-good-research things called Library Databases.  What is the difference between Library Databases and search engines and what kinds of resources does each yield? Read on for the 411… 

Library Databases 

  • Type of Information Retrieved:  Magazine, Journal, Newspaper articles; books or book chapters; conference proceedings or papers; technical publications.
  • Review Process: Information in library databases comes from publishing groups and goes through a review process before it is published in electronic or print materials. This information has been checked for accuracy and reliability by the publisher’s editors.
  • How often is it updated? Regularly!  From daily to quarterly or even annually.
  • Cost/Accessibility:  Library databases are NOT FREE. The library pays a fee for access to databases.
  • Uses:  Library Databases should be the first stop for any academic research assignment, whether you’re searching for background or biographical information, a basic overview or in-depth research coverage. A Reference Librarian can assist you in choosing the right database for your research needs.

Search Engines

  • Types of Information Retrieved: Some free personal and commercial Web pages from around the world – No search engine includes every Web page; very few free journal, magazine & newspaper articles/citations; current news and information; government information; advertisements; pornography; e-mail, chat rooms, newsgroups, listservs.
  • Review Process: Since no one owns or controls the Internet, information found using search engines does not go through a review process. Anyone can publish any opinion or idea on the Internet, regardless of their authority, education or experience in that subject area. Web pages found using search engines should be carefully evaluated for their accuracy and reliability and generally should NOT be a starting point for academic research.  Check out this page for a list of criteria to evaluate the quality of web pages.
  • How often is it updated?  Unknown; may include links to pages that no longer exist (“dead links”)
  • Cost/Accessibility: Most search engines and web pages found through search engines are free. Search engines may also retrieve links to fee-based web sites or databases that do not allow access without a username and password.
  • Uses:  Search Engines are a good place to find entertainment or leisure related information, some current news coverage, directory information (phone numbers, addresses), or basic consumer information.   

So the next time it’s you versus that 10 page research paper, stop by the Briggs Library web page and check out our amazing selection of more than 90 Research Databases. You’ll like yourself much better for the quality of work you produce using these powerful resources – and your instructors will too!

Laura M. Wight, Asst. Professor/Reference Librarian

State Aid Study Task Force Executive Report

February 14, 2007

On the new book shelf this week you will find a copy of the State Aid Study Task Force : Executive Report. (Call Number LB2826.S8 S72 2006). This report is also available on the web: http://purl.sdln.net/sds/ed125-ai21/

In the news from the South Dakota Legislature the focus has been on funding education during this year’s session. For the past two years the State Aid Study Task Force has been examining the way K-12 education is funded in South Dakota and looking at possible alternatives. A 70 page draft of the Executive Summary was released November 15, 2006 and much of the education legislation this session was drafted based on the work of the task force. Although the report made no formal recommendations some of the legislators who where members of the task force have proposed legislation on topics ranging from increasing teacher’s pay to school consolidation. ~Mary Caspers-Graper

Welcome to Bloggin’ @ Briggs

February 7, 2007

We are very pleased to welcome you to Bloggin’ @ Briggs.  We plan to post information about Briggs Library and its collections and services on this blog.  You can help make this an enjoyable way for all of us to communicate with each other by adding your thoughts, suggestions, complaints, and compliments to our posts on the blog.  We value your opinions and want to engage you in this discussion. 

We will post information about:

  • what’s happening at the library
  • databases, e-journals and e-books available in the library
  • how to make effective use of the library’s resources
  • library services that can help you, such as course reserves, interlibrary loan, information desk, etc.
  • other exciting news and developments

We want to hear from you!  To begin this dialogue I invite you to suggest topics about Briggs Library you would like us to address in future postings.

We look forward to blogging with you,

Clark Hallman, Interim Dean of Libraries