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Michigan State University

SW 905: Historical and Current Analysis of Social Work and Social Problems: Scholarly Articles

History Article Databases

America: History and Life (AHL) and Historical Absracts (HA)

AHL provides access to articles, book reviews, and dissertations in American and Canadian history. HA provides access to articles and dissertations for the rest of the world from 1450 onwards. You can find primary sources material by using a fairly elaborate search strategy.

A useful command is the asterisk (*) wildcard; it takes the place of an indeterminate number of unknown letters. For example, "nurs*" will retrieve: "nurse", "nurses", "nursing," etc.


Caution: The following search strategy not only will retrieve the actual primary sources but also works about primary sources.

In a search box, typing:

DE Diaries will retrieve works by individuals.

DE Documents for works by organizations.

DE Letters will retrieve both.

Example: "How can I find diaries by Canadian nurses?"

In a search box, type nurs* and Canad* since it will search entire records for variant forms.

On another search box line, type DE diaries or DE Letters

After clicking on the "Search" button, you should retrieve at least two records.

Historical Scholarly Articles

Articles published in earlier time periods. These databases index and provide full-text access to articles from backfiles of journals, for example, back to volume 1 issue 1 of many journals that have existed for a long time.

Periodical Archives Online

This database from ProQuest is an archive of hundreds of digitized journals published in the arts, humanities and social sciences. It provides researchers with access to more than 200 years of scholarship, spread across a wide variety of subject areas.

There is no specific start date of coverage provided, but a search on "social welfare" includes articles dating back as early as 1862.


JSTOR is short for "journal storage" and is committed to the long-term preservation of journal content by providing digitized backfiles of academic journals.

A search on "social welfare" includes articles dating back as early as 1833.

PsycINFO including PsycARTICLES

PsycINFO is the main database for the psychology literature, and overlaps well into the closely related field of social work. This database indexes back to the mid-1800s.

A search on "social welfare" includes articles dating back as early as 1899, and book chapters back to 1861.

Hein Online

Access to law review articles from legal journals. Coverage is from the first issue published for all periodicals.

A search on "social welfare" in the Law Journal Library includes articles dating back as early as 1830.

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