More than Just Books: Part One

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When members of the LSU community think of the LSU Libraries, they think “research.” But what exactly does “research” entail? What resources do students and faculty actually use?

As a former LSU undergraduate student, I’ve heard many individuals refer to our libraries as the place with “all the old books.” However, LSU Libraries provides students and faculty with books and much more, including databases, magazines, audiovisual equipment, carrels, study rooms, laptops, clickers, and expert help from librarians who are standing by to assist with research needs and questions.


LSU Libraries maintains access to more than 450 online databases for scholarly purposes. In 2010, the LSU databases were accessed 1,677,374 times with 3,680,325 searches completed. The most popular resources are EBSCOhost, which had 977,156 sessions; Web of Knowledge, with 94,872; Gale Group, with 90,602 sessions; and Worldcat with 32,840 sessions.

These databases provide scholarly journal articles, or information about articles, in any subject imaginable. Ask a Librarian if you would like help learning to research with these databases.

EBSCOhost is a collection of databases, including:

Agricola – for agricultural information from the US Department of Agriculture,
ERIC – for educational resources dating back to 1966,
Philosopher’s Index – for information on a wide variety of philosophic orientations such as: aesthetics, ethics, logic, metaphysics, religion, and law,
PSYCinfo – for psychology journals, dissertations, and reports in thirty languages as well as related disciplines, and
• Numerous other databases tailored to specific disciplines.

Web of Knowledge is another collection of databases including:

• Web of Science – a multidisciplinary database focusing on scholarly
journals including the following indexes:

-Science Citation Index – covering 1900 to the present
-Social Sciences Citation Index – covering 1956 to the present
-Arts & Humanities Citation Index – covering 1975 to the present

• Medline – for medical literature from the National Library of Medicine
Journal Citation Reports – for journal performance metrics (often an important factor for faculty choosing where to publish their research)

Gale Group is a collection of databases from Gale Publishing Company

• Gale Virtual Reference Center – a collection of general electronic books and

Other popular databases are JSTOR, MathSciNet, and LexisNexis Academic.

JSTOR is an archival database of full text scholarly works covering a variety of disciplines. In 2009, JSTOR was accessed 976,085 times which represents 33.14% of the total accessions among Academic Libraries in Louisiana and in 2010 the number of accessions had reached 402,618 in only June.
• In 2009 MathSciNet had a total number of 63,297 queries or number of searches run through LSU Libraries. This represents 41.62% of the grand total of queries asked in 2009. As of October 2010, the number of queries totals to 63,708 queries asked through LSU Libraries alone.
• Lastly, in 2009 LexisNexis database performed 95,815 searches through LSU Libraries alone.

By Guest Blogger Adam St.Pierre
Graduate Student, School of Library and Information Science

Sigrid Kelsey is the Director of Library Communications and Publications at the LSU Libraries.

Posted in Services
One comment on “More than Just Books: Part One
  1. Prentice says:

    Very informative, Adam! I’ll be sure to use this post whenever I have doubts about where to go for the information I need in my quest for further knowledge on any subject. Thank you!

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