There are many excellent online guides to doing a lilterature review. Samples include:
- The Literature Review: A Few Tips on Conducting It - Univeristy of Toronto
- Academic writing: what is a literarure review - Simon Fraser University
- Conducting a Literature Review - Georgetown University Medical Centre
- Literature Review - Deakin University Library
- Learn how to write a review of literature - University of Wisconsin - Madison
- Guidelines for writing a literature review - University of Minnesota, Duluth
The library's new search tool, Summon, allows you to search for books, journal articles, media, and more with a single search. You can access Summon from the library's homepage. Also try the Advanced Search.
Once you have your results:
To see only BOOKS click on Book/eBook.
To see only JOURNAL ARTICLES click on Journal Article and click on Scholarly & Peer-Review.
Because there will be many results, it is important to narrow your search.
However, Summon doesn't search everything that the library owns so you will still need to search other resources to find everything that you need. Summon also doesn't let you do sophisticated searches that you may be used to doing in specific databases or the library catalogue.
Use Summon when starting research on a topic or when you are not sure which databases to use.
Search the catalogue for books
Use the catalogue to find books, ebooks, government documents, conference proceedings, films and journals.Only the titles of journals are included in the catalogue: use the databases to search for individual articles.
If you know the title of the item you seek, perform a title search.
If you know the author, perform an author search. Enter the author's name with the surname first.
Otherwise, try a keyword search
When keyword searching, if a keyword exists in the subject heading or in the title, the resource is much more likely to be about that topic. You can construct sophisticated searches by specifying that your search terms must exist in particular fields of the catalogue record. Prefix the search term with a: to restrict to authors, t: to restrict to titles, s: to restrict to subject headings, and n: to restrict to the notes (where tables of contents are loaded). Or you can partially limit a search. For example:
Once you find one or more good books, look at the SUBJECT headings that have been used. Follow those SUBJECT heading links to find related books.
A small sample of Library of Congress Subject headings:
- Nonprofit organizations - Management
- Charities - Canada
- Voluntarism -- Government policy -- Canada
- Social entrepreneurship
- Social surveys -- Methodology
- Qualitative research -- Methodology
- Research methods in public administration and nonprofit management : quantitative and qualitative approaches
- The volunteer management handbook : leadership strategies for success
- The NSFRE fund-raising dictionary
- Excellence in fundraising in Canada : the definitive resource for Canadian fundraisers
- Social media for social good : a how-to guide for nonprofits
- Charities and not-for-profit fundraising handbook
- A dictionary of civil society, philanthropy, and the non-profit sector
- The Jossey-Bass handbook of nonprofit leadership and management
- Handbook of research on social entrepreneurship
- Handbook of public policy evaluation
- Encyclopedia of evaluation
- Handbook of practical program evaluation
- Doing survey research
- Focus groups : theory and practice
- PRO: Philanthropy Resources Online
- Business Source Complete
- EconLit with Full Text
- Canadian Business and Current Affairs Database
- CPI.Q (Canadian Periodical Index)
- Sociological Abstracts
Good to know:
- Within a database, limit your search to scholarly articles when it is appropriate to disregard other resources.
- Never limit to full-text only as we may subscribe to the journal you find from another vendor. Use the Get it! icon to search for the full text when it is not immediately available.
- Use available options to search more than one database at a time.
- Look for the option to set up an RSS feed or to Create an Alert. You are then notified when a new entry is added to the database that meets your search criteria.
- Use the Interlibrary Loans RACER form to request items not held at Carleton’s library.
- For additional relevant databases, look at the Subject Guides that best relate to your topic, such as Public Policy and Administration, Philanthropy & Nonprofit Leadership, Canadian Studies, Business, Sociology etc.
Use Citation Indexes to find if a particular author and/or paper has been cited by other authors.
- Select Cited Reference Search from top tool bar.
- You have the article
- "Street Credentials and Management Backgrounds: Careers of Nonprofit Executives in an Evolving Sector" by Suarez, DF (Suarez, David F.) Nonprofit and voluntary sector quarterly Volume: 39 Issue: 4 Pages: 696-716 AUG 2010
- Enter the author in cited author box
- Suarez, D (use surname, first initial and truncation symbol)
- Retrieve abbreviation of journal name from list provided, and enter year of publication. NONPROF VOLUNT SEC Q 2010
- Deselect disciplines not relevant from listing under Citation Databases
- From the list, select the article and click on Finish Search at the top of the list.
- Results show the article has been cited 4 times - the most recent in 2013.
- You have the article
- Note the option Create Alert to be notified of any future citings of this article.
- Choose Author Seach from top tool bar.
- Enter author's name and affiliation if known
- Waters, R.D.
- North Carolina State University
- Select displayed result. On right hand side all published articles by the author will be listed. Click on article for citing references. "Tweet, tweet, tweet: A content analysis of nonprofit organizations' Twitter updates" by Waters, R.D., and Jamal, J.Y. Public Relations Review Volume 37, Issue 3, September 2011, Pages 321-324
- Look to the right hand side of the screen - this article has been cited 6 times. Click to see the list.
- Note #5
- "Engaging stakeholders through Twitter: How nonprofit organizations are getting more out of 140 characters or less" Public Relations Review Volume 38, Issue 2, June 2012, Pages 313-318 has been citied 7 times.
- Enter author's name and affiliation if known
- Remember to see if a citing article has itself been cited!
Tips for effective searching -
If you find one relevant article for your reseach it can lead to other relevant papers by the following:
- using the databases, including Summon, look to find all papers & books published by the author or co-authors
- explore the bibliography in the paper for sources
- using Web of Science or Scopus, look for articles that cite the article you found. Remember, some databases will also list citing articles but those lists are limited to the current database. The Web of Science and Scopus are more comprehensive, with coverage from multiple databases.
Grey literature is an important source of information for research in public policy.
Grey literature is defined as "information produced on all levels of government, academics, business and industry in electronic and print formats not controlled by commercial publishing" ie. where publishing is not the primary activity of the producing body." —ICGL Luxembourg definition, 1997. Expanded in New York, 2004
- Finding the Hard to Finds: Searching for Grey Literature - University of British Columbia
- GreyNet International Directory of organizations in grey literature
- Grey Matters
- Grey Literature Report - provides updates to grey literature on health services and topics.
- Alternative Press Index
- Economics Search Engine (American Economic Association)
Policy Reports and Working Papers
- Brookings Institute
- Canadian Public Documents Collection
- Conference Board of Canada e-Library In addtion to the e-Library, look to particular Centres for research on specific topics. Go to Conference Board of Canada and scroll down to the bottom of the page. Select Sitemap. Under Special Projects you will see Centre for the North, Centre for Food in Canada, How Canada Performs, etc.
- National Bureau of Economics Research (NBER) Working Papers
- Policy File Index (U.S.)
- Social Research and Demonstraton Corporation A non-profit research organization, created specifically to develop, field test, and rigorously evaluate new programs.
- Harvard Kennedy School provides a searchable database of more tha 590 think tanks and research centres.
Financial data and statistics
- taxation data – shows use of charitable deduction - latest 2009
- T3010 Returns - Official financial information of charities from Canada Revenue Agency. Search by charity name.
- Charitable giving by Canadians (last done in 2010)
- Caring Canadians, Involved Canadians: Tables Report
- Satellite account of non-profit institutions and volunteering - Statistics Canada site provides economic statistics describing Canada’s non-profit sector.
- Charity focus - Information on registered charities in Canada. Search by charity name, directors or keyword using the advanced search option at top right of page.
Qualitative Research at Carleton University
NVivo is a software package that helps with qualitative data analysis. Go to the Subject Guide: NVivo for information on getting a license, attending a training session and links to online tutorials.
Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research. Thousand Oaks, Calif., Sage, 2011
Sage Dictionary of Qualitative Management Research. London Sage, 2008.
REF HD30.4.S23 2008
Johnson, Gail, Research Methods for Public Administrators. Westport, CT, Quorum Bks. 2002
Silverman, David, Doing qualitative research : a comprehensive guide. Los Angeles : SAGE, c2008.
H62 .S472 2008