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Michigan State University

Political Science / Public Policy Resources: Find Books

General Tips

  • Check the MSU Online Catalog for books, videos, and more.  Note that the MSU Online Catalog is a union catalog which includes the holdings of the Library of Michigan, the MSU College of Law Library, and other branches on our own campus.

  • Do a wider search using MelCat (a  network of participating Michigan libraries) or WorldCat (searches thousands of libraries). You can request non-MSU Library materials through interlibrary loan. NOTE: Not all materials listed in MelCat or WorldCat can be borrowed through interlibrary loan, but many can.

  • Don't forget to use the bibliographies in reference works, books, and articles to identify other resources on your topic.

    Ebrary Academic Complete Collection

    The MSU Library began subscribing to the Ebrary Academic Complete online library during the  Fall 2011 and Spring 2012 semesters.  Try it out.   If you see a title of interest, copy it and search the MSU Library Online Catalog by title for a link.

    Hathi Trust Digital Library

    MSU faculty, staff, and students may want to try searching the Hathi Trust Digital Library to find online books on their topics.  The Hathi Trust is a project started by the CIC to digitize pertinent materials from Big Ten and other participating libraries.  Some resources are available via full text, others only provide snippets like Google.

    Locating Books

    Need to find books on a political science paper topic? Consider searching the MSU Libraries Online Catalog.

    If you do not know the author, title, or LC subject headings, try a keyword or keywords approach. While reviewing the results, note that most records provide LC subject headings which can also be used to identify more books on the same or similar topics.

    Since Fall 2014, the MSU Libraries have provided a new discovery layer called  SearchPlus  to pull together a wide variety of resources on a single topic.  Type in a keyword or phrase in the open box and take a look at the results.  Note that you can refine your search by choosing selected facets from the left side of the page, including Books (only). 

    Below are some suggested LC Call Number ranges for browsing or LC subject headings which may prove helpful for those doing general criminal justice research. Copy, click on the Online Catalog link, click on LC Subject button, paste in your subject heading, and see what items are listed.

    Browsing Stacks

    Browsing for items in the stacks can unearth gems otherwise missed. Below is an abbreviated guide for browsing topics in the field of political science.

    Africa - Gov't            JQ 1870-3891

    Asia - Gov't              JQ 1-1869

    Balance of Powers     JF 229

    Citizenship               JF 801, JK 1756 (U.S.)

    Civil/Political Rights   JC 571, JF 799+, JK 1717 (U.S.)

    Comparative Gov't     JF 5.2

    Conservatism            JC 573

    Democracy                JC 421+

    Diplomacy                 JX 1621

    Elections                   JF 1001+, JK 1856+ (U.S.)

    Espionage                 JK 468 .I6 (U.S.)

    Europe - Gov't           JN

    European Union         JN 26

    Fascism                    JC 481

    Foreign Policy            JX 232

    Freedom of Information  JC 598

    Freedom of the Press    JC 593, Z 657-659

    Freedom of Speech       JC 591

    Immigration                 JV 6001+

    International relations   JX 1226+

    Legislative process        JF 375.2, JF 515+

    Lobbying                      JF 529, JK 1118 (U.S.)

    Local/Municipal Gov't     JS

           Detroit                  JS 831-849

    Nationalism                  JC 311+

    Michigan Gov't              JK 5801-5893

    Minority Rights             JC 312

    Patriotism                   JC 329

    Political parties            JF 2011+, JK 2255 (U.S.)

    Political theory             JC 11+

    Power                         JC 330, HN 49.P6

    Privacy rights               JC 596+

    Property rights             JC 605, JX 4085

    Refugees                    JX 1975.8+, JX 4294.R4

    United Nations             JX 1976-1978

    Voting                        JF 1001+, JK 1961 (U.S.)

    LC Call Number Browsing Areas

    Here are some guides to Library of Congress call number browsing areas for Political Science and Public Policy.  Check the Reference (1st Floor East) or the appropriate sections of the stacks for some of our many print resources....

    LC Guide to Political Science Call Numbers  

    Detailed guide showing a breakdown of call numbers pertinent to Political Science.

    Most books pertaining to Political Science will be located on the 3rd floor - East Side of the Library.

    Selected Subject Headings

    Here are some examples of subject headings to use for political science topics:

    ·         Abortion -- Government policy -- United States

    ·         Class consciousness -- Political aspects – United States

    Conservatism -- United States

    ·         Journalism -- Political aspects

    Political questions and judicial power -- United States

    Political science – Philosophy

    Political socialization -- United States

    Religion and politics -- United States

    Rwanda -- Politics and government -- 1962-1994

    Self-determination, National

    United States -- Politics and government -- 21st century

    ·         Women political candidatesst century


    Locating Books With a LC Call Number

    If you find a book of interest in the catalog or SearchPlus, and the Location says Main Library, click here to find the location.

    What if the Book is Not There?

    If the book is CHECKED OUT, try requesting the book from another library:

    • Search U-Borrow to see if the book is available from our 13 partner research libraries and have the book delivered to the Main Library for you

    If the book is NOT available in U-Borrow:

    • Search MeLCat to see if the book is available from other Michigan libraries and request it be delivered to the Main Library for you

    If the book is NOT available in MeLCat:

    • Request the book through ILLiad.

    *Alternatively, you can place a Recall on the checked out book. For more information about MSU recall policies, please click on the Recall link or call Circulation at 517-355-2333.

    If the book is NOT CHECKED OUT, ask Circulation to conduct a Search for you.

    Subject Guide

    Suggest a Resource

    Want to recommend a new resource in the field of Political Science or Public Policy?

    Contact Jon Harrison, the selector for this area.  Contact information is available above.

    Ask a Librarian

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