Historical News/Mags - ONLINEHistorical News/Mags - IN the Library
This is the "Home" page of the "History: Primary Sources" guide.
Alternate Page for Screenreader Users
Skip to Page Navigation
Skip to Page Content
San Francisco State University
Guide to researching primary sources at the San Francisco State University Library, including historical magazines & newspapers, online primary sources, primary sources in books, and primary sources in libraries & archives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Last Updated: Aug 19, 2014 URL: http://libguides.sfsu.edu/primary Print Guide RSS Updates

Home Print Page
  Search: 
 
 

Secondary Sources

LOOKING FOR SECONDARY SOURCES?  See the HISTORY: SECONDARY SOURCES research guide!

Citation Help

  • Diana Hacker's Guide to Referencing
    Examples of how to create citations in APA, MLA, and other styles.
  • Noodle Bib Express
    Copy in the information about your source, and Noodle Bib Express will format it correctly for you in APA, MLA, and other styles.
  • Zotero
    Free plug-in for Firefox users that lets you track citations within your web browser.
 

General Search Tips

  • Remember to think about both the TOPICS that you are researching as well as the TYPES OF PRIMARY SOURCES that you would expect to contain information about your topics (for example, if you were interested in childbirth practices in 18th century Europe, what types of sources from that period might have that kind of data?).  Sometimes you can find better results if you look for a particular type of source (for example, 18th century medical texts) than keyword searching on your specific topic (eg "childbirth practices").

  • When reading articles and books related to your topic, pay close attention to FOOTNOTES/CITATIONS. You can use this information to track down the primary source material that the author used.

  • ASK your professors and librarians FOR HELP in determining what kinds of primary sources are available or suitable for your research.
 

Definitions: Primary vs. Secondary Sources

A PRIMARY SOURCE is generally defined as some kind of original material or data. Depending on your research topic and perspective, primary sources can include diaries and letters, interviews, speeches, business or organizational records, eyewitness accounts, photographs, video or film, government documents, newspapers or magazines, or even books.

A SECONDARY SOURCE is generally defined as something that analyzes, interprets, or comments on a primary source. In history, the key secondary sources that you need to find are research books and research journal articles.

Librarian

Profile Image
Kendra Van Cleave
Contact Info
Main Library - 3rd Floor

kendrav@sfsu.edu
415-405-0997
Send Email
Office Hours:
By appointment
 
Description

Loading  Loading...

Tip