Table of Contents
At the start
- Think about your topic and
- Look for background information (encyclopedias, handbooks, introductory texts).
- Formulate a research question
- Brainstorm about keywords for each concept for your topic
- Create a search strategy before entering words into the search engine(s)
Make a note of any key authors or references (citations)
What is the effect of the Anti-terrorism Act and how is it used for national security?
Brainstorm about your question.
- Why was it introduced?
- When did it come into effect?
- How has it been applied by the police or Canada's Border Agency?
- What is the effect on people?
- Has any particular group been the focus or target or has there been racial profiling?
Has it affected people's rights?
Identify Key Concepts
Library Research Concepts Worksheet (Concept Map / Keywords)
|Concept 1||Concept 2||Concept 3||Concept 4||Concept 5|
|Related Terms||Related Terms||Related Terms||Related Terms||Related Terms|
|border security||law or laws or regulations||federal*||racial profil*||civil rights|
|national security||legislat*||provinc*||"people of color"||deten* or detain*|
|public safety||policy or policies|
Use "or" to combine same concept
- When using one line search box, also put braces "()" around your synonyms. E.g. (elderly or seniors or aged)
- Use "and" to combine different concepts
- Use "quotation marks" to search for an exact phrase
Use asterisk (*) the truncation symbol, for variation on endings of words (child* will find: child, children, childless, childlike)
- "$, ?, *, !" are common truncation symbols. Most use asterisk.
- Alternate spellings: most databases use American spelling - try both versions (i.e. honour or honor)
Alternate words: youth or adolescents or teenagers or young adults // aged or elderly or seniors or old people
- Modify your terms when during your searches you become aware of new terminology to describe your topic.
Subject headings, descriptors or thesauri words
- Examine the relevant references (citations) more carefully. Check their subject headings, descriptors or thesauri words that describe the key concepts contained within that article/book reference. These concepts are the "main focus" of that book/article so your search results will be more relevant.
- General or specific concept words: North America or Canada or Vancouver or Downtown Eastside
- Abbreviations: TV or television
Start with sources that provide an overview or summary. Encyclopedias, handbooks or textbooks provide overviews, definitions, and identify key authors and ideas.
- The Canadian encyclopedia = L'encyclopédie canadienne
- The Encyclopedia of British Columbia
- Encyclopedia of Political Science
- Encyclopedia of Sociology (Gale Virtual Reference Library)
- International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences: IESBS
- International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences
- Encyclopedia of Social Welfare History in North America HV 12 E497 2005
- Encyclopedia of Terrorism HV 6431 K883 2003
Use either FastSearch or the library catalogue to find books, ebooks, etc.
SFU Library FastSearch
Choose "FastSearch" tab to find books, encyclopedia entries, journal articles, newspaper articles, etc. Then use the limiters on the left-hand side to narrow your results.
NOTE: From FastSearch, if you need a "group code" to bring items into your account, please check here:
SFU Library Catalogue Search
Use the Books, journals, media (catalogue) to find materials owned by SFU.
Search by author (last name first, then first name):
Tip: Think about each line as a "different" concept. Join different concept words with an "or"
Tip: asterisk at the end of a root word picks up various endings of that word.
E.g. canad* will pick up "Canada", "Canadian", "Canadians", "Canadien", etc.
Keywords To Consider:
- canad* AND society AND (race OR racism OR ethnic*)
- Canad* and immigr* and (visible minorit* or ethnic*)
- canad* and government* and policy and immigr*
- canad* and society and social policy
- foreign work* and canad* and governm*
- seasonal work* and canad* and governm*
- social assistance and Canada and policy
- live-in care and canad*
(anti-terror* or national security or border security)
(law or legislat* or regulat*)
(race or racial or islam*)
(human rights or detain* or deten*)
- (anti-terror* or national security or border security)
- The Indian Act
You may also want to examine the -First Nations Terminology guide.
- Canada. Anti-terrorism Act
- Canada -- Emigration and immigration -- Government policy
- Canada -- Emigration and immigration -- Government policy -- History
- Canada. Indian Act.
- Canada - Race relations - Textbooks
- Canada - Social Conditions
- Canada Social Conditions Statistics
- Canada - Social Conditions - Textbooks
- Canada -- Social policy
- Canada Social Problems
- Child welfare -- Government policy -- Canada
- Citizenship -- Canada
- Domestics -- Canada
- Domestics -- British Columbia -- Vancouver
- Equality -- Canada
- Ethnicity - Canada
- Foreign Workers Canada
- Foreign Workers Canada Evaluation
- Foreign Workers Canada Social Conditions
- Foreign Workers Government Policy British Columbia
- Foreign workers -- Government policy -- Canada
- Foreign Workers Legal Status Laws Etc Canada
- Immigrants Canada
- Immigrants Canada Economic Conditions
- Immigrants Canada Economic Conditions Statistics
- Immigrants Canada History
- Immigrants Canada Social Conditions
- Immigrants Canada Statistics
- Indigenous peoples -- Canada -- Social conditions -- Statistics
- Immigrants -- Canada -- Statistics
- Immigrants -- Social conditions -- Canada
- Income -- Canada -- Statistics
- Income Distribution Canada
- Income Distribution Canada Statistics
- Indigenous peoples -- Canada -- Government relations
- Indigenous peoples -- Canada -- Government relations -- Textbooks.
- Indigenous Peoples Canada Social Conditions
- Indigenous Peoples Canada Statistics
- Indigenous women -- Violence against -- Canada
- Minorities - Canada
- Minorities Civil Rights Canada
- Multiculturalism Canada - Government Policy
- Native peoples -- Canada -- Social conditions -- Statistics
- National security -- Law and legislation -- Canada
- Poor Canada Statistics
- Poverty Canada
- Poverty -- Canada -- Government policy
- Poverty Canada Statistics
- Poverty -- Government policy -- Yukon.
- Poverty Ontario
- Race discrimination -- Canada
- Racism - Canada
- Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada. Report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada -- Congresses
- Public Welfare Canada
- Public welfare -- Canada -- History
- Social classes -- Canada
- Social integration -- Canada
- Social problems -- Canada
- Social Service Canada
- Terrorism -- Canada -- Prevention
- Temporary employees -- Government policy -- Canada
- Vancouver B C Emigration And Immigration
- Vancouver B C Social Conditions
- Welfare Recipients Canada
- Welfare Recipients Employment Canada
- Women immigrants -- Canada -- Social conditions.
- Women Immigrants Employment Canada
Try using databases to get the perspective of different disciplines.
How to Find Journal Articles. The majority of our databases have a link
- Where Can I Get This? Use this link to find a copy of article (print or fulltext) but if SFU Library does not own the journal, then you can request a copy through Document Delivery (free).
CBCA Full Text Reference
- Access to popular & business magazines as well as scholarly journals.
Canadian Points of View Reference Centre
- provides a series of essays that present multiple sides of a current issue
Canadian Public Policy Collection--
- Full text of public policy documents from Canadian institutes, think-tanks and research groups. Since it is fulltext, you can search for very specific concepts such as "foreign trained credentials"
Canadian Research Index -
- Index to Canadian government publications (federal, provincial), parliamentary committees, royal commission reports, etc. A microform copy of the documents is available through the "Microlog" number which is attached to each record.
- All documents found in the database are available in the Microlog microfiche collection (JL 044 37) on the Sixth Floor of the Bennett Library. Individual reports are filed by the MICROLOG NUMBER.
- For the more recent years, once you have identified a title, try an internet search for availability.
- Covers the major Canadian dailies, including the Vancouver Sun.
- Globe and Mail Newspaper (1991 to current)
Sociology / Anthropology perspectives
- Key database for sociology and anthropology journals.
- Key anthropology journals.
Social Sciences Full Text
- Multi-disciplinary database.
Multidisciplinary index to academic & popular journals
Canadian & United States history
Index to all aspects of criminal justice, including psychological.
Women Studies International
- Indexes journals in women's studies covering topics such as gender, sexuality, sex roles, discrimination, family, employment
- Scholarly journals. Also check the "cited by" link below the articles to find other relevant articles.
Primary Source database
Statistics are collected by a variety of agencies and organizations on a variety of topics. After collection, the data is processed and packaged for publication. Part of the processing involves grouping the data (i.e. age groupings such as 15-19).
- BC Statistics
- Includes current socioeconomic statistics, quick facts, and historical tables
- Statistics Canada
- Canadian census
- Which Census Product Should I Use?
- Library of Parliament - Parliamentary Information and Research Service Publications - Briefs on issues, Bills, etc.
- Metropolis Project - British Columbia -- research material on immigrants, migration, etc. Metropolis Canada, International site.
- PovNet - Building an online anti-poverty community
For help with writing essays, check the link to: Student Learning Commons
SFU Library Books
- A Guide to writing sociology papers
- The Sociology student writer's manual
- Studying society the essentials
- E-book. See chapter 18 on writing essays
- Academic writing - a list of over 200 books.
- Academic Writing Technique
- The handbook of academic writing a fresh approach
- Report writing -- Handbooks, manuals, etc.
- Students must write a guide to better writing in coursework and examinations
- Successful academic writing
- Webster's New World student writing handbook
- Writing a successful research paper a simple approach
- Writing at university a guide for students
- Writing better essays
- Writing and presenting research