Why use journals?
Journals are a valuable research resource. Published in parts which come out several times a year, they contain short articles on specific topics, including the most recent research in your subject area.
The best place to start looking for journals is SOLO (Search Oxford Libraries Online). This will provide you with the information you need in order to find out:
• where the printed version of the journal you require is held
• whether it is available electronically
• the coverage of both versions (i.e. which volumes are held in print, and which are available in electronic format).
Why use electronic journals?
Many journals are now available online in full-text. These electronic journals can be browsed in a similar way to their printed equivalents, but have the added advantage of:
• being searchable (e.g. by subject, author or title of article)
• being accessible from your computer, saving the time required to track down printed journals in different libraries
• being available when the libraries are closed
How do I access electronic journals?
The easiest way to access e-journals is via e-journals A-Z.
Oxford University e-Journals will provide you with access to all the eJournals we subscribe to - supplied by different publishers and via different platforms (e.g. JSTOR, Project Muse, Periodicals Archive Online) - in one place. However, you can also access most of them from live links in SOLO (Search Oxford Libraries Online).
You can use bibliographic databases, such as the MLA Bibliography, to help you find articles on a particular topic or author. Often these databases will provide direct links to an online version of the article.
You can find other online bibliographic databases indexing relevant material by going to the Subject tab on Databases A-Z and selecting English.
The MLA International Bibliography indexes articles from over 4,000 humanities journals from 1926 to the present. You can search for articles by author, subject or title, and complex combined keyword searches are also possible.
The MLA also provides links to the library catalogue and full text articles, where available. Library staff will be pleased to help with your searches wherever possible.
(N.B. If you are not connected to the Oxford network you will need to login with your Oxford Single Sign On username and password to gain full access to the above online resource)
The Oxford English Dictionary defines a bibliography as 'a list of the books of a particular author, printer, or country, or of those dealing with any particular theme; the literature of a subject'.
Bibliographies can be found either within printed works or online (such as the MLA Bibliography). Sometimes bibliographies have been published solely on one topic, author or period. For example: The Cambridge bibliography of English Literature Vol.4 1800-1900 / edited by Joanne Shattock.
They are extremely useful for researching a subject / author more widely and seeing what other research has already been published. They are sometimes referred to as guides or indexes.