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Agriculture Research Guide   Tags: agriculture, botanical, plant science  

This is a general guide to finding information on agricultural subjects including crops, soils, forages, farm management, agricultural and biosystems engineering, and sustainable agriculture (SARE).
Last Updated: Jul 2, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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Article Research at MSUL

Articles contain the most current information published in a field of study.

Most professors and researchers prefer articles that are "scholarly" in nature.  Characteristics of scholarly journals are that they have the following qualities:

  • The articles contain original research (such as scientific experiments, surveys and research studies)
  • A list of references or sources is provided at the end of each article
  • An editorial board, composed of experts in the field, reviews articles to decide whether they should be accepted; this is also known as "refereed," "peer-reviewed," "professional," or "academic".
  • Uses a specialized vocabulary for that field.
  • Contain few if any advertisements. If included, they are highly specialized and specific to scholarly discipline (i.e. specific laboratory equipment, medical tools and drugs).
  • If you are uncertain about the scholarly nature of a journal, you all look up the title or ISSN in the periodical database Ulrichs Periodical Directory (UlrichsWeb).  This database will tell you about the journal including the nature, it's audience, and in which databases it is indexed and abstracted.

The Library Catalog contains the TITLES to all of the print and electronic format journals to which we have access.  The Catalog does not list the articles within the journals. The individual articles can be found in the many article databases to which we subscribe.

Citation searching:

If you have a citation to an article, the easiest way to locate the article is to look up the title of the journal in the catalog.  Identify whether we own the journal and the format, print or electronic.  If in electronic format, do we have that year/volume? If yes, you can click on the link provided to go directly to the online articles and find the one you need.  If it is not online, do we have it in print?  If so, identify the call number and go to the stacks to find the proper volume and issue.  If we do not own the journal or issue, you can request the article through Interlibrary Services.

Article Research - General Research

  • CAB Abstracts  Icon
    Coverage: 1910-current. CAB covers the subject of agriculture in the broadest sense. It includes: agronomy, biotechnology, crop protection, dairy science, economics, environmental degradation and remediation, forestry, genetics, herbicides, irrigation, leisure, recreation and tourism, microbiology, nutrition, parasitology, rural development, veterinary medicine and much more. Journals, monographs, conferences, books, annual reports and other sources from more than one country are scanned regularly for inclusion in the database. Platform: Web of Science.
  • Agricola  Icon
    Covers every major agricultural subject, including agricultural engineering and marketing, animal breeding, entomology, environmental pollution, farm management, foods and feeds, pesticides, rural sociology, veterinary medicine, and water resources. Citations consist of journal articles, book chapters, monographs, conference proceedings, serials, technical reports, and other materials on a range of agricultural topics. Platform: EBSCOhost.
  • Biological Abstracts  Icon
    Coverage: 1926 to current. Biological Abstracts is a comprehensive reference database covering life sciences journal literature. It covers the following fields: Botany, Microbiology, Pharmacology, Biochemistry, Evolutionary ecology, Kinseology, Neurology, and Toxicology. Over 4,200 journal titles with over 12.1 million records. All records in Biological Abstracts include highly informative abstracts with complete bibliographic details, including: Titles, Authors, Taxanomic Data (Latin name search), Disease Data, Gene Name Data, and Geologic Time Data. Platform: Web of Science.
  • Biological and Agricultural Index Plus  Icon
    Coverage dates: Indexing 1983+, Abstracting 1994+, “select” Full Text 1994+. Biological & Agricultural Index Plus offers researchers convenient online access to the core literature of biology and agriculture—much of it from peer-reviewed journals—plus full text. Full text citations also link to PDF page images, featuring graphs, charts, diagrams, photos, and illustrations indispensable to science research. Subjects Covered Agricultural Chemicals, Agricultural Economics, Agricultural Engineering, Agriculture and Agricultural Research, Animal Sciences, Biochemistry, Biology, Biotechnology, Botany, Cytology, Ecology, Entomology, Environmental Science, Fishery Sciences, Food Science, Forestry, Genetics, Horticulture, Immunology, Limnology, Marine Biology, Microbiology, Nutrition, Paleontology, Physiology, Plant Pathology, Soil Science, Veterinary Medicine, Weed Sciences, Wildlife Management, Zoology. Platform: EBSCOhost)
  • BioOne1 & 2  Icon
    A combined collection of 148 full-text critical, high-quality titles across the biological, ecological, and environmental sciences.
  • ScienceDirect  Icon
    Coverage: 1995-current. ScienceDirect is the Elsevier platform which provides access to the full text of over 2,000 journals, from 1995 to present (with extended coverage for some titles). It also contains electronic books. Coverage includes strong content in the health, life, physical, and social sciences.
  • Plant Management Network  
    The Plant Management Network is a unique cooperative resource for the applied plant sciences. Includes three peer-reviewed citable journals, Applied Turfgrass Science, Crop Management, Forage and Grazinglands, and Plant Health Progress which provide credible current information in areas important to practitioners, policy makers, and the public.
  • Web of Science and Book Citation Index  Icon
    Coverage: 1900-current. Includes the Institute for Scientific Information Citation Indexes - Science, Social Science, and Arts and Humanities. It indexes science, social sciences, and arts and humanities information from nearly 9,300 of the most prestigious, high impact research journals in the world. Platform: Web of Science.
  • Groundwater & Soil Contamination Database  Icon
    1975-current. With over 60,000 references to documents, coverage is worldwide, with emphasis on the United States. It indexes journal articles, books, conference proceedings, theses and dissertations, but you should note that the journals are selectively indexed for only those articles considered specifically relevant to groundwater and soil contamination. Also covered are all relevant reports of the U.S. Geological Survey, and other US departments including Energy, Defense, HHS, and EPA. Platform: American Geosciences Institute (AGI).

International Agriculture

For agricultural topics outside of the United States, try these resouces after searching CAB Abstracts.

  • International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS)  Icon
    International Bibliography of Social Sciences, from the British Library of Political and Economic Science of the London School of Economics and Political Science, indexes the information contained in over 2,600 social sciences journals and 6,000 books each year. Coverage includes both core and specialized material from over 100 countries in more than 90 languages. Approximately 70% of the records are in Coverage: 1951 to current. English, and articles in other languages are displayed with both the original language title as well as with an English translation. The comprehensive coverage provided in the database, while based on the core disciplines of anthropology, economics, political science and sociology, also reflects the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of the social sciences. Platform: ProQuest
  • Foreign Agriculture Service (USDA)  Icon
    International agricultural market, production and trade data and reports. See also the Global Agricultural Trade System. GATS includes international agricultural, fish, forest and textile products trade statistics dating from the inception of the Harmonized coding system in 1989 to present.
  • FAO Corporate Document Repository  Icon
    The FAO Corporate Document Repository houses FAO documents and publications, as well as selected non-FAO publications, in electronic format. It enables users to easily access the accumulated knowledge and information produced by FAO directly on the Internet.
    To view the new publications added to the repository in the last month, see new documents.
    The advanced search provides the user with the means to carry out a specific search, by querying a particular field or combination of fields. There are three distinct advanced searches, one for meeting documents one for publications, such as books and journals, and one for articles.
  • AGRIS  Icon
    Coverage: 1975-current. Covers all aspects of agriculture, including forestry, animal husbandry, the aquatic sciences and fisheries, and human nutrition. The database is produced by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) in cooperation with participating countries and international organizations. Information on using AGRIS to locate FAO reports is available.

Specialty Databases

  • ASABE Technical Library  
    Coverage: 2001-current. Online access to all journals, standards, meeting and conference papers, textbooks, and monographs beginning of the Amer. Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. ASABE Technical Library Contents are listed out on this Guide.
  • Food Science and Technology Abstracts (FSTA)  Icon
    Coverage: 1969-current. FSTA covers all areas of food science, food technology, and human nutrition, including basic food science, harvesting and post-harvest, biotechnology, toxicology, packaging, and engineering. Some 1800 publications in over 40 languages are scanned regularly, including journals, reviews, standards, legislation, patents, books, theses, and conference proceedings. Platform: Web of Science.
  • Compendex  Icon
    Coverage: 1884 to current. Worldwide coverage of journals and conference publications in all areas of engineering including agricultural and biosystems engineering. Platform: Elsevier.
  • Garden, Landscape and Horticulture Index  Icon
    The Garden, Landscape and Horticulture Index is a popular and scholarly index to over 300 journals on gardening, horticulture, landscape design, botany, ecology, plant conservation, garden management, and horticultural therapy. Platform: EBSCOhost.
  • American Periodical Series (APS)  Icon
    Coverage: 1740-1940. This database contains periodicals that are special interest and general magazines, literary and professional journals, children's and women's magazines and many other historically-significant periodicals. Of relevance, includes articles on agriculture, gardening, lawn care, and recreation. Platform: Proquest. For a neat historic timeline of the coverage dates, visit the About page for the database by clicking here and scrolling way down.

Suzanne Teghtmeyer

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Suzi Teghtmeyer
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MSU Main Library
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