Death and Dying

SSOC 314 ; Prof. Fowler
Guide for finding sources at the George T. Potter Library


February 5, 2006

Leigh Keller

Group Panel and Abstract Guidelines


 I. Library Homepage

  • Provides access to the catalog (OPAC), databases, interlibrary loan forms, etc.

II. Finding Books at the Potter Library

  • Catalog: use this to find books, periodical titles (NOT articles ), government documents, reserve items, music,and movies owned by the Library. You may limit a search by language, year(s) of publication, type of material, etc. This may take a few seconds to load.
  • Use the Basic Search to find material using Keywords
    • For example: search for: death children or death child to locate a broad range of materials the library has on these keywords
    • When you find an appropriate title, click on the Related Records tab located at the top of a catalog record to see which Library of Congress subject headings are discussed in that particular book/DVD/periodical
  • OR
  • Search the catalog using Subject Browse feature if you know the relevant Library of Congress subject heading, for example:
    • Children Death
    • Grief
    • Loss (psychological)


    1. Start with broad searches. It is much easier to discard too much rather than start with too little.
    2. If you don't know the Subject Heading, use the Related Records tab located on the top of a catalog record to get to the headings. This will help you focus in on more relevant material.
    3. Can "virtually" browse the shelves by clicking on the call number in a record.

III. Reference Material

  • The reference stacks are located on the 3rd floor (this is also the library's entrance).
  • Some useful materials for your projects:


IV. Electronic Resources

Academic Search Premier A multi-disciplinary database containing both full-text articles and citations. When only a citation is included, click on the "Check availability at Ramapo" link to see if the full text of the article is available in our collection.

Social Sciences Journals

Full text of over 280 titles
CINAHL Full text material includes nearly 70 journals plus legal cases, clinical innovations, critical paths, drug records, research instruments and clinical trials.
Journals @ Ovid Full-text of 51 medical journals
Psychology Journals Full-text of hundres of psychology journals
PsycInfo A good source for death and dying journals
Ulrich's Guide to Periodicals check to see if a journal is peer-reviewed
Biomedical Reference Collection Includes key journals such as Omega


Scholarly/Peer Reviewed/Refereed articles have been reviewed by a selected panel of experts in the discipline covered by that journal. Many of the databases allow you to limit your search to these articles.


  1. Always switch to the Advanced Search page in a database. This will give you more control over your results.
  2. Always use Boolean Operators-AND, OR, NOT when running a search. For Example: suicide and family and impact
  3. Use quotations marks for phrases. For example: "united states"
  4. Always check your Spelling if the database results are zero.
  5. Use the Subject Terms or Thesaurus link, if available, to find the best terms to use in a database.


V. Interlibrary Loan


Both of these links can be found under QUICK LINKS on the library's
  • Journal Finder: this provides information regarding if a journal is available full-text online, in print in the library, or available on microfilm.
  • Interlibrary Loan: allows studens to borrow a book or article that the George T. Potter library does not own. There is a link from the Journal Finder page.



VI. Using Web Sources

Use Evaluating Websites to determine if the site is authoritative enough to use in your paper.

VII. Bibliographies and Annotated Bibliographies


Need more help? Visit or call the Reference Desk: 201.684.7574

Use QandA NJ: a 24/7 virtual chat with a reference librarian. This link can be found under QUICK LINKS on the library's homepage.