Research guide for First Nations, Inuit and Metis: Traditional beliefs and contemporary challenges: Semester in dialogue

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

Research Sources for First Nations, Inuit and Metis: Traditional Beliefs and Contemporary Challenges

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.

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; Surrey - SFU 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: (To search for books by subject heading, use the Browse Search option in the SFU Library Catalogue, then select Subject browse from the drop-down menu.)
  • Indians of North America -- Canada
  • Indians of North America -- British Columbia
  • Native peoples -- Canada
  • Indigenous peoples -- Canada
  • Inuit
  • Metis
  • Most of the remaining subject headings can also be entered with 'Native peoples' or 'Indigenous peoples' in place of Indians of North America (eg. search Native peoples -- Canada -- Politics and government as well as Indians of North America -- Canada -- Politics and government, etc.). In some cases, Inuit and Metis will also work in the place of Indians of North America:
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Politics and government
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Government relations
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Social conditions
    • Indians of North America -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- Canada
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Criminal justice system
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Social life and customs
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Folklore
    • Indians of North America -- Land tenure -- Canada
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Treaties
    • Indians of North America -- Canada -- Residential schools
    • Indian art -- Canada
    • Restorative justice
    • Indian Act -- Canada
    • Canada. Indian Act
  • Limit your search to items at Belzberg Library by selecting Belzberg Library 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 collection.
  • For a step-by-step interactive guide to searching the SFU catalogue, see the SFU Library Catalogue Search Guide.

2. Journal and Newspaper Articles

  • 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.
  • Connect to Journal Articles and Databases to find articles in academic journals, trade magazines 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 photocopies of articles through the "where can I get this?" link. Use the appropriate subject lists to identify the most useful databases for your topic.
  • Good article databases for First Nations, Inuit and Metis: Traditional Beliefs and Contemporary Challenges:
  • 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 Information

4. Selected Internet Sources

In addition to the library catalogue and article indexes 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 one of the web search engines to find additional information, including the web sites of interest groups and other organizations. Use a search engine such as Google or or see our guide to Web Research

Useful sites for First Nations, Inuit and Metis: Traditional Beliefs and Contemporary Challenges:

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.

Ask Us!

  • If you would like any further assistance or information about the library or your research, don't hesitate to Ask Us! in person, by phone, email or interactive reference.