The focus of this web page is to provide graduate level research guidance with respect to the philosophy of geography, and the interaction between human beings and their environments.
Begin by investigating your topic
- International Encyclopedia of Human Geography - It includes over 1,000 authoritative detailed entries on the philosophy, theory, key concepts, methods and practices of geographers. It also has biographies of notable geographers, and and essays on geographical thought and praxis in different parts of the world.
- Dictionary of Physical Geography
- SAGE Knowledge Encyclopedias
To find journal articles (or books), you have two options:
1. Search the Omni, the library's main search box to find journal articles, books, etc. It searches everything in all our collections and databases. Refine your results by using the filters on the left side of the screen.
2. Search GEOBASE, a subject-specific database, that covers all of human and physical geography literature and the environmental sciences. Remember to refine your results by using the filters on the left of the results screen.
- Use the Thesaurus in GEOBASE to help identify controlled vocabulary terms and find synonyms and related terms. It will improve your search strategy to use the suggested or narrower terms.
- Keep track of the keywords and other search terms you use in your searches to save time and effort.
The recommended journals to write your review essay is Progress in Human Geography or Progress in Physical Geography. These journals can be searched individually for 'review' articles on your topics. If you need help, use the Omni Search Tips for Journal Searching.
Other important titles:
1. Select keyword search terms for your topic
- Choose words that represent the key concepts of your research topic or question
2. Create a search string using Boolean operators (must be in CAPS when searching Omni)
Sample search: "feminist geography" AND (perspective* OR viewpoint*)
- --> think of synonyms for each concept and groups synonyms with brackets using OR to connect them
- --> use AND operator to search multiple ideas and/or phrases
- --> use the truncation symbol * (asterisk) to replace word endings or variant spellings, ie: enviro*
- --> use quotation marks to ensure that words are searched together as a phrase
3. Select a Database from the subject-specific databases for Geography
4. Use database filters - to obtain high quality, academic literature, remember to refine your search by selecting the following filters:
- Peer-reviewed articles
- Subject (optional)
Tip 1: Filter your search to find scholarly journal articles .Other sources are published in different formats (ie: newspaper or magazines) are written for specific audiences and they do not all have solid authority as with the scholarly, peer reviewed literature.
Tip 2: Follow the subject links in any book (or journal) record to find books on similar topics. These words are part of a controlled vocabulary of pre-selected terms used to describe the contents of a book (or journal article).
Tip 3: Check the bibliographies of journal articles to find additional relevant sources.
Tip 4: If you are unsure if a journal is peer reviewed, check Ulrichsweb. It is the definitive source that lets you know what type of journal you are using by 'content type'.
- SAGE Research Methods - This database supports beginning and advanced researchers throughout a research project with a full range of qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods for the social and behavioral sciences. It also contains the methods core and video collections.
- Project Planner - This tool is designed to guide you through your research project. If you're just starting out, it might be helpful to read more about why we do research before getting started using this tool.
- Conducting Research in Human Geography: theory, methodology and practice
- Elementary Statistics for Geographers (online)
- Geographic thought: a critical introduction
- Geographic thought: a praxis perspective
- Methods in human geography: guide for students doing a research project
- Research methods in geography: a critical introduction
- The SAGE Handbook of spatial analysis (online)