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Belzberg Library welcomes students in the Undergraduate Semester in Dialogue to SFU Vancouver. This guide will help you to use our library to find and evaluate research material for your projects. If you have any further questions about library services, please contact Karen Marotz, Head, Belzberg Library at 778.782.5054 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Library research involves selecting your topic, identifying the best sources and appropriate research tools, accessing the items found and evaluating your results. Start Your Research Here is a brief guide that will help you with this process.
Start your hunt for information "at home" by visiting the SFU Library home page. This gathers all the best research tools, guides and research help in one place. Try our Library Search engine from the home page to quickly find books, articles and information on the library website in one search.
Books, articles and web sites on your course reading list or course outline can also provide a good starting point, particularly if the items include bibliographies, references or links to related material.
1. Books, ebooks, films, music, sound, slides
Search the catalogue to find all books, reports and media materials in the SFU Library at all three campuses (Belzberg - Vancouver; Bennett - Burnaby; Fraser - Surrey).
- Searching by KEYWORD is generally the best way to start. Once you have found some good results with your keyword searches, use the subjects on those items to focus your search.
- Try the following SUBJECT headings:
- Child health services
- Community health services
- Health services accessibility
- Health services administration
- Medical care
- Medical economics
- Medical ethics
- Medical policy
- Medicine, Preventive
- Mental health services
- Minorities -- Medical care
- Indigenous peoples -- Medical care
- Older people -- Medical care
- Poor -- Medical care
- Prenatal care
- Public health
- Single mothers
- Substance abuse
Limit your search to items at Belzberg Library by selecting Belzberg Collection from the main search screen. You can also use ADVANCED KEYWORD search. Select Belzberg Library in the COLLECTION field to include online resources. Select Belzberg Library (Downtown/Harbour Centre) in the LOCATION field for items physically at Belzberg Library.
- If the item is not available at Belzberg Library, or is out on loan, please request it! Find electronic books, films, dvds, cds or slides on your topic by searching specific collections or by using ADVANCED KEYWORD search and selecting the appropriate format in the FORMAT field.
- For a step-by-step interactive guide to searching the SFU catalogue, see the SFU Library Catalogue Search Guide.
2. Journal Articles and Databases
You can look up journals by title and search for articles in them.
All print and electronic journals subscribed to by the SFU Library are listed in the catalogue. Electronic journals are also listed in the Electronic Journals Database by title, subject and by the association/organization who publishes the journal.
- Mental Health e-journal list: many journals for the subject of mental health
- Addiction e-journal list: Access to electronic journals related to addiction
- Indians of North America: Access to electronic journals related to aboriginal issues
- Children/youth: Access to various electronic journals related to children and youth
- Pregnant women and single mothers: Access to various electronic journals related to motherhood
- Older people: Access to various electronic journals related to seniors
- A few journals not included in the above lists:
Connect to Journal Articles and Databases to find articles in academic journals, trade magazines, reports and newspapers, as well as financial and statistical data. Many indexes provide online access to the full text of the articles or allow you to directly request copies of articles through the "Where Can I Get This?" link. Browse by subject area to identify useful databases for your topic.
Suggested article databases for Health Issues and Ethics
- Academic Search Complete - Multidisciplinary index to academic and popular journals.
- Ageline - abstracts to the literature on social gerontology, with a focus on the social, psychological, and economic aspects of middle age and aging.
- Business Source Complete - business and economic aspects of public policy issues, including health policy.
- Canadian Newsstream - full text of major Canadian newspapers and Canwest's small market BC papers.
- Canadian Public Policy Collection - publications include primary research and opinion from Canadian public policy institutes, research institutes, think tanks, advocacy groups, government agencies and university research centers.
- CBCA Complete - multidisciplinary index to Canadian journals and magazines. Includes Statistics Canada's Health reports from 1998-present.
- Geobase - covers human and physical geography, including health policy.
- Ipsos News Center - Polls, public opinion and research information on international topics including health.
- Native Health Databases - abstracts of health-related articles, reports, and surveys pertaining to the health and health care of American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Canadian First Nations.
- Philosopher's Index - all aspects of philosophy, including issues such as medical ethics, bioethics, end of life and informed consent.
- PsycInfo - psychology and psychological aspects of health issues and ethics.
- Medline - comprehensive coverage of international biomedical and health literature.
- Sociological Abstracts - sociological aspects of health care provision.
- Web of Science - excellent multidisciplinary source. Indexes thousands of social science and humanities journals in addition to science journals. Other features include cited reference searches and personal alerts.
Try the same subject terms as suggested for books, or check the thesaurus or list of subject terms within the database. For help with searching databases, check Finding Journal Articles and/or Moving From Citation to Article.
For books and articles not online or at SFU, request an Interlibrary Loan.
3. Statistics and government sources
- British Columbia Ministry of Health Services - information about health issues and BC's provincial health care system. Browse or search for reports and publications.
- BC Health Authorities - links to the five authorities that govern, plan and coordinate BC's health care services.
- Canadian Research Index - lists all depository publications of research value issued by the Canadian federal, provincial and territorial governments.
- Health Canada - federal department responsible for Canada's health care system, including legislation and guidelines, and administering the Canada Health Act.
- Public Health Agency of Canada - includes links to health information for specific populations, such as Aboriginal Peoples and Seniors.
- Statistics Canada. Health - gateway to Statistics Canada information on health care in Canada. Subtopics include mental health and well-being, life expectancy and deaths, and pregnancy and births.
- Statistics Canada. Health Indicators - over 80 indicators measure the health of the Canadian population and the effectiveness of the health care system.
- Statistics Canada. Health Reports - peer-reviewed journal of population health and health services research.
- Vancouver Coastal Health - responsible for health service delivery in Vancouver, including Vancouver Community health services.
- World Health Organization - directs and coordinates authority for health within the United Nations system. Links to publications, data & statistics, as well as health topics that include child health, adolescent health, aging, pregnancy, substance abuse, and mental health.
4. Selected internet sources
In addition to the library catalogue and databases, you will find a lot of good information on the web. Governments, research institutes, non-profit organizations, industry and other associations and companies all have web sites - many with publications freely available. Use a web search engine such as Google, Google Scholar or Ask.com to find additional information, including the web sites of interest groups and other organizations. Check the library's Internet Research guide for additional help in finding and evaluating web sites.
Useful sites for health issues and ethics
- Canadian Health Services Research Foundation (CHSRF) - funds and promotes health care research on topics such as mental health and aging populations.
- Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) - provides data and analysis on Canada's health system and the health of Canadians.
- Canadian Institutes of Health Research - Canada's premier health research funding agency. Links to research highlights as well as publications and resources specifically for ethics.
- Canadian Medical Association - association providing leadership and guidance to physicians. Look for topics in the advanced search function.
- Canadian Mental Health Association - promotes mental health through advocacy, education, research and service.
- Centre for Health Services and Policy Research (CHSPR) - UBC research institute that includes many policy publications.
- Health Care Ethics Institutes and Organizations. "Applied Ethics Resources on the Web" - comprehensive list of ethics resources on the web collected by Dr. Chris MacDonald, Assistant Professor at Saint Mary's University, Nova Scotia.
- Health Council of Canada - monitors and reports on the progress of health care renewal in Canada. Publications on aboriginal health.
- Institute for Health and Social Policy - addresses a wide range of health and social policy issues including childhood
- Institute of Health Economics - Alberta based organization that provides economic evaluations of health policy and practice in areas such as mental health, addictions, aboriginal health, maternal and child health, women's health, elderly/aging health.
- SFU Faculty of Health Sciences - focuses on population and public health and includes the Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health and Addictions and the Children's Health Policy Centre.
5. Research guides for related subjects
Subject Research guides are produced by SFU liaison librarians to point you to the best external sources as well as providing information about publications available in the library. Try these guides for further suggestions:
- First Nations
- Government Resources
- Health Sciences
- Public Policy
- Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies
Writing and citing
- University Reading and Writing lists sources in the library that will help you write better papers, or check out Writing for University and the writing hand-outs from the Student Learning Commons.
- Writing and Style Guides will tell you how to cite your sources properly.
- Plagiarism will tell you what plagiarism is and how to avoid it. Take the interactive tutorial Understanding and Avoiding Plagiarism to test yourself and learn more.
- RefWorks is a web-based bibliography and citation database manager licensed for current SFU students. It allows you to import and export citations from numerous online databases and format bibliographies automatically. See the online Help for more information, online tutorials and FAQs.
- If you would like any further assistance or information about the library or your research, don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian in person, by phone, email or interactive reference.