JSTOR for Christmas

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JSTOR is a massive digital library of scholarly works which is a must for anyone intending to study at higher levels.

There’s a lot to like about this resource, including:

  • coverage across many subject areas
  • straightforward access to bibliographic data
  • citation locator option
  • search box and browse options.

The first thing we did was set up an account to use JSTOR off site so we can have access for all this information whenever we need it.

Next we set about doing a search using the new Beta Search option which has some attractive features for refining results.

As we typed our search term, JSTOR offered a drop down list which meant we could select “Christmas traditions around the world” and hit search. The resulting 180,000+ hits we were subsequently quickly able to reduce by using the slider to narrow the time period from which the results were drawn. The slider’s graphical display shows us the time span we’re accessing and the number of results available.

We like the way JSTOR defaults to only content I can access because this means we don’t waste time going after information we can’t use immediately and it’s brilliant to be able to restrict our results to particular types – so if we need to look for primary evidence only, we can!

Our search on Christmas traditions around the world, modified by date range and content type leaves us with plenty of results to choose from, with abstracts or summaries revealed in a click. The bibliographic data for each result is clearly displayed and can be exported in a number of ways.

All in all, we think JSTOR is just the resource for anyone looking to impress teachers with their research choices and strategy and will offer that essential step up to a more sophisticated level of study.

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