Pathfinder
1950s to Today
PHS High School Library
January 2008

Scope: Guide to materials available in the PHS library, through subscription databases, and through previewed free websites.

Keywords: Use the topic you are researching as your keyword. To narrow your search to a specific aspect, use that term with your topic. For example:

Vietnam War AND opposition
Peace Movement AND Quakers
Genocide AND Darfur


Print Resources: Use the Library Catalog to locate print resources in the PHS Library


Subscription Databases: See library staff for user names and passwords.


  • CQ--Congressional Quarterly Covers a wide range of social, economic, political, and environmental issues. Congressional reports include an abstract, overview, background, current situation, chronology, and pro/con perspective.

  • **EBSCOhost** A multidisciplinary database providing full-text articles for more than 700 general reference publications with coverage dating as far back as 1984. Covering virtually every subject area of general interest, Ebscohost also includes 36 full-text reference books and an Image Collection of 276,622 photos, maps and flags. This database is updated daily via EBSCOhost. *Use the "TOPIC SEARCH" option to retrieve "Points of View' in your search results.

  • American History Online: Spans more than 500 years of political, military, social, and cultural history, highlighting the important people and events of the American experience.

  • Modern World History Online: Covers the people, places, and events in the broad expanse of history—from mid-15th century to the present.

Use the Federated Search to search American History and Modern World History together. Use your topic as search terms/keywords. Tabs across the search result screen indicate the type of resource. Use tabs to find Biographies, Events& Topics, Primary Sources, Images & Video and Maps & Chart.

  • SIRS Knowledge Source: SIRS Knowledge Source (SKS) is a comprehensive database portal which is comprised of several distinct reference databases including SIRS Researcher®, SIRS Government Reporter®, SIRS Renaissance®, SKS WebSelect™, SIRS Discoverer®, and Discoverer WebFind™. Updated daily, SKS provides relevant, credible information on social issues, science, history, government, the arts and humanities. Full-text articles and Internet resources are carefully selected from thousands of domestic and international publications and respected organizations. Begin your research by performing a subject heading search. That will bring up a list of LC Subject Headings related to your search terms. If you are not returning many results through subject heading searches, try a keyword search. SIRS is not as intuitive as some of the other databases, so you need to be more flexible in your search terms and strategies. SIRS has an online Quick Start Guide with more detailed search strategies.

  • World Book Online: Encyclopedia, reference, and multimedia sources. Good starting point for a general overview. Includes links to reviewed web sites.

The following databases are published by Gale and have similar interfaces and use similar search strategies. You can search each database individually or search them simultaneously by using Gale’s . Click Subject Guide to begin your research.

  • Gale Virtual Reference Library: Gale Virtual Reference Library is a database of encyclopedias and specialized reference sources for multidisciplinary research. These reference materials once were accessible only in the library, but now you can access them online from the library or remotely 24/7. This collection includes reference materials funding by the NYSL and those purchased by PHS.

  • Opposing Viewpoints: Information on today's hottest social issues. Features include viewpoint articles, full-text magazine and newspaper articles, primary source documents, statistics, images and podcasts, and links to Websites.

  • Student Resource Center: Broad database offering resources in literature, cultures, science, history, and geography. Full-text articles from reference works, primary sources, and periodicals.

To find "Point of View Articles"

  • Opposing Viewpoints: Information on today's hottest social issues. Features include viewpoint articles, full-text magazine and newspaper articles, primary source documents, statistics, images and podcasts, and links to Websites. The new Critical Thinking module helps students frame questions around their issues as well as provides opportunities to check comprehension and critical thinking skills.
  • **SIRS Knowledge Source**:


Free Websites:

  • 20th Century History in the Yahoo! Directory: Links to a multitude of websites of varying degrees of reliability on a variety of topics related to the 20th century. If considering using links from the Yahoo! Directory, be sure to consult the Website Evaluation PowerPoint on the Research Tools page of this Wiki.