American Studies/RPO Collaboration
PHS High School Library
December 2009

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

Keywords: Use the war you are researching as your keyword. To narrow your search to a specific aspect, For example:

Great Depression” AND music
Vietnam War AND music

To use Boolean search strategies, click on the "advanced search" tab in the database you are searching.

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

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

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.

  • 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.

Grolier Online Passport: With over 55 million words, 50,000 websites, and several hundred thousand magazine articles, finding authoritative, age appropriate and subject-specific information is easy. Users have access to award-winning databases, special features, multimedia presentations, an interactive atlas, dictionaries, and much more. Grolier Online provides resources tailored specifically for teachers and students, all contained within a structured and monitored environment.

Opposing Viewpoints: Features include viewpoint articles, full-text magazine and newspaper articles, primary source documents, statistics, images and podcasts, and links to Websites.

ProQuest: Full-text articles from magazines, newspapers, encyclopedias, and educational journals. Start by doing a “Topic Search,” which will give you subject headings under which to search.. Notice at the top your result list the Suggested Topics options. These are alternate topics related to the search terms you have entered. Suggested Topics appear in order by relevance (best suggestions and matches first) and often contain pairs of index terms to help focus results.

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.

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

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

Free websites:

  • American Cultural History: The Twentieth Century: Pathfinder of the Kingwood Library of Lonestar College, with the purpose of being to present a series of web guides on the decades of the twentieth century. The pages are being prepared by the Reference Librarians. Period pictures used are those of the family of the web author(s).

  • TeacherOz: Comprehensive Website created by a teacher of 9th grade Pre-AP World Geography, 10th grade World History, and History in Film at Rowlett High School (a large suburban school outside of Dallas, Texas). This link takes you directly to her 20th & 21st page.