On this page
- Urban Indicators Exercise resources
- Micro-data Analysis Exercise resources
- Urban Survey Exercise research methods resources
- Urban Observation Exercise resources
- What is information literacy?
- Evaluating sources
- Open access resources
- Keeping track of your research
- Assistance at the library (including GIS)
This web page is intended to help you find information for Research and Information Literacy unit of URB 670. If you need help, please contact Nina Smart, Liaison Librarian, at 778.782.5043 or firstname.lastname@example.org (Monday to Thursday ) or Ask a librarian.
Note: Latest census date for source is listed. If it's 2011 (or earlier), it means that information for 2016 is not yet available for that source.
Urban Indicators Exercise resources
Census Profile, 2016 Census
"Provinces and territories, census metropolitan areas, communities and census tract"
Census Tract Reference Maps, by Census Metropolitan Areas or Census Agglomerations including Vancouver 2016
Census Program Data Viewer, 2016 Census (CPDV) "a new advanced web based data visualization tool that will make statistical information more interpretable by presenting key indicators in a statistical dashboard. The CPDV makes it easy to find many places in Canada, see them on a map, and get basic geographic and socio-demographic data for those places."
Canadian Census Analyser (CHASS)
Alternate access to Canadian Census Data - SFU resource. Includes 2016 Census Profile Tables and National Household Survey
Micro-data Analysis Exercise resources
(Note: this exercise not required 2019)
Urban Survey Exercise research methods resources
Fundamentals of social research [print]
Sage Research Methods Online (SRMO)
A wealth of full-text resources on an immense range of various forms of research including the Methods Map. Examples: "Unobtrusive measures" and "Observation, overt and covert" in: The A-Z of Social Research ; Planning and Preparing the Analysis
Urban Observation Exercise resources
"2017" SFU resource for mapping demographic and consumer information, down to the Census Tract or Postal Code area, e.g. 0242.00 or V5R 4G6. Note: you can sign in as a guest, and there are many useful video tutorials
Community Profiles (My Health My Community)
Survey results for BC municipalities and Neighbourhood Profiles in Lower Mainland, including Built Environment (good sidewalks, taking transit, etc.) "updated 2017"
Neighbourhoods (Census Tracts) (BCStats)
2006 PDF or Excel
Metro Vancouver Regional City Centre Profiles
2011 "major activity hubs for transportation, employment and housing" Examples: Metrotown, Surrey Metro Centre (to be updated later)
Census and National Household Survey Maps 2011 (Metro Vancouver)
(to be updated later)
NHS Profile 2011 (Statistics Canada - inactive)
National Household Survey down to Census Tract, including " labour, education, place of work, commuting to work, mobility and migration, language of work, income, earnings, housing and shelter costs"
News and other resources
Available to the SFU community
Fulltext of national and local newspapers. Search under Publications for specific papers, such as Burnaby Now
Fulltext articles on Canadian topics, including newspaper articles. Example: Hastings-Sunrise
Canadian Electronic Library (CEL)
Fulltext public policy documents. Examples: "Benchmarking Active Transportation in Canadian Cities", "Cracks in the Foundation: Solving the Housing Crisis in Canada's Poorest Neighbourhood"
See also Municipal and Local history research section of main Urban studies page
Article databases for issues, patterns, and trends
Available to the SFU community
Urban planning, public policy
Urban sociology, social policy
Human geography, urban planning
Web of Science
indexes major urban studies journals and is a major citation index
Use this link to get SFU journal holdings; has useful Cited By function to find newer articles
Examples of finding neighbourhood or city information from photographs, social media etc.:
City of Vancouver Archives Digital Objects
Videos and high resolution images, including Cartographic materials (example: "Kitsilano Beach")
Use "Search the map" to find photos (examples:100 Mile House, or Parks Taken in Burnaby Heights)
for media files (example: "Mount Pleasant" Vancouver)
Finding related hashtags (examples: #cityofvancouver vs. #DeltaBC, or #CambieCorridor - need to subscribe). There's Twingly to "get access to all that social data at your fingertips!"(also need to subscribe)
Finding local services within walking distance of cities and neighourhoods, and local transit rating (examples: Oakridge, Downtown Vancouver)
What is information literacy?
An information literate individual is able to:
Determine the extent of information needed
Access the needed information effectively and efficiently
Evaluate information and its sources critically
Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally."
-- Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education From the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), American Library Association
See also: Research Commons: Research Lifecycle for Graduate Researchers
In brief: Ideas> Partners> Proposal writing> Research process> Publication
In brief, consider: Authority; Content; Scope; Currency; Objectivity
Finding and evaluating resources
What is a scholarly (or peer-reviewed) journal?
SFU guide "will help you identify and evaluate scholarly (also known as peer-reviewed) journals, magazines, and trade publications — both print and online."
Avoiding predatory publishers
Section of "Information for Authors: Scholarly Publishing", but also useful for researchers for evaluating publishers and journals
Searching the World Wide Web: Overview
OWL, the Purdue Online Writing Lab
Designing social research: a guide for the bewildered [online and print] See Chapter 2, "Reviewing What Other People Have Said – or How Can I Tell If Others' Research Is Any Good?"
All about journals
SFU's complete journal listing; search by title keyword or ISSN
Is a journal peer-reviewed and where is it indexed? To find out, go to:
Ulrich's Periodicals Directory to search by the title, e.g. "International journal of urban and regional research" as a phrase search or ISSN, e.g. 1469-8706); look under the Abstracting & Indexing section of the full journal description; look at the Refereed line, where Yes means peer-reviewed.
Key journals for Urban studies
Quick links for titles held at SFU
Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)
11,000 journals and counting. Features a search function for finding articles
Open access resources
"Open Access publications are free to read on the open internet. Readers can download, copy and distribute an Open Access publication, as long as credit is given to the authors. Readers do not require a subscription or any other form of payment, either personally or through their university or library, to access the content" from Open Access of SFU Library's Scholarly publishing + open access site.
Open Access journals, See : DOAJ above
Open Access Theses and Dissertations
"over 600 colleges, universities, and research institutions"
ProQest Dissertations and Theses Abstracts and Index
(Not open access) "World’s most comprehensive collection of dissertations and theses from around the world" (aka a lot more than 600)
What happens once you graduate from SF? Refer to: Services to Alumni
Including SFU electronic resources available off-campus (not, sadly, most of the databases listed on this page)
Keeping track of your research
SFU library guides
How to Reference Geospatial Data, Maps, Atlases, Air photos
Finding and Using Online Images Citing
SFU Library guide
Recommended Best Practices in Citation of Cartographic Materials
Association of Canadian Map Libraries and Archives (ACMLA)
Assistance at the library (including GIS)
New! Spring 2019 Data and GIS consultations available at Harbour Centre - see Belzberg event for details.
Database of tutorials: Lynda.com
Online training library of thousands of videos. Examples: "Learn NVivo: The Basics"; "Excel 2016 Essential Training"; "SPSS Essential Training". Requires registration with an SFU email address.
Guide: SPSS: Resources for learning about the software package SPSS Statistics This guide includes links to tutorials, tools, and a discussion forum since, sadly, there are currently no SPSS consultations