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Social Work Program Resources: More Tips and Tools

Research guide for BSW and MSW students and faculty

Requesting Books or Articles using Interlibrary Loan

You may request items via Interlibrary Loan from the libray's home page. Here is a quick link: 

JCSU Interlibrary Loan Request


Avoid Plagiarism

Plagiarism is a serious offense, but these tips will help you avoid it:

  • Cite every piece of information used that is not your own idea. Results from your own research and information considered common knowledge do not need to be cited.
  • Use "quotation marks" every time you use the exact words from a source.
  • A good "rule of thumb" is that any time you have used more than 3 consecutive words that are exactly the same as the source, you have not paraphrased -- you have quoted.
  • Allow yourself plenty of time to research, gather info, read, and write. Procrastination can cloud your otherwise good judgment.
  • APA uses the parenthetical citation method; include the author and date to credit the work of another. For example:  (Jones, 2010)
  • Include in the first sentence information that lets the reader know you intend to quote, paraphrase or summarize the work from another source. For example:  Research done by Jones (2010) concluded that....

 Anti-plagiarism resources:

Know the difference between Scholarly & Popular

Most instructors at the college level demand that all or most of the periodicals your use in writing research papers come from scholarly journals. This is especially true for upper-division courses and essential in graduate work.

What is a Scholarly Journal?

  • Scholarly journals always cite their sources in the form of bibliographies or footnotes/endnotes.
  • Articles are written by a scholar in the field or by someone who has done research in the field.
  • The author’s name appears at the beginning or the end of the article, sometimes with brief biographical or contact information.
  • Scholarly journals often have a sober, serious appearance.
  • They often contain graphs and charts, but few glossy pages, ads or images.
  • The language of a scholarly journal is that of the discipline covered.
  • It assumes the reader has some background in the field.
  • The main purpose of a scholarly journal is to report on original research or experimentation for the benefit of the rest of the scholarly world.
  • Many scholarly journals, though not all, are published by specific professional associations.

What are some examples of Scholarly Journals?

  • Journal of Educational Research
  • AMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association
  • Psychological Bulletin
  • Journal of Social Work Education

What are NOT Scholarly Journals?

  • News magazines: Time, Newsweek, US News and World Report
  • Opinion Magazines: New Republic, National Review, The Nation
  • Popular Magazines: Vogue, Better Homes and Gardens, Sports Illustrated
  • Trade Journals: Beverage World, Automotive News
  • Sensational/Celebrity Publications: Globe, National Enquirer, Entertainment Weekly

Evaluate Websites

Things to Consider:

Authorship (who is responsible for the information)
Accuracy (how accurate)
Currency (how current)
Publishing Body (consider URL such as .com, .org, etc)
Point of View (the bias)
Appropriateness (how will this affect your research)