The Urban Experience: Semester in Dialogue

Belzberg Library welcomes students in the Undergraduate Semester in Dialogue to Harbour Centre. This guide will help you to use our library to find material for this topic. If you have any further questions about library services, please contact Ebony Magnus, Head, Belzberg Library at 778.782.5054 or

Research Sources for the Urban Experience

Library research involves selecting your topic, identifying the best sources and appropriate research tools, accessing the items found and evaluating what you have found. 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.

Books, Films, Music, Sound, Slides

Search the catalogue to find all books, reports and media materials in the SFU Library at all three campuses (Belzberg - Harbour Centre; Bennett - Burnaby; Surrey - SFU Surrey).

  • Searching by WORD 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:
    • Cities and Towns
    • City Planning
    • Community Development, Urban
    • Sustainable Development
    • Urban Ecology
    • Urban Policy
    • Urban Renewal
    • Urbanization
  • Limit your search to items at Belzberg Library by selecting Belzberg Library LOCATION filter.
  • 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 the specific collection.
  • For a step-by-step interactive guide to searching the SFU catalogue, see the SFU Library Catalogue Search Guide.

Journal and Newspaper Articles

  • All print and electronic journals subscribed to by the SFU Library are listed in the catalogue. 
  • 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. Use the appropriate subject lists to identify the most useful databases for your topic.
  • Good article databases for the Urban Experience
  • 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 at SFU, request an Interlibrary Loan.

Selected Internet Sources

In addition to the library catalogue and article indexes and databases, you will find much good information on the web. Governments, research institutes, non-profit organizations, industry and other associations and companies all have websites - many with publications freely available. Use one of the web search engines such as Google or to find additional information, including the websites of interest groups and other organizations or see our guide to Web Research.

Useful sites for the Urban Experience:

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 publication 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.