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Why should I start my research with reference books?
Use reference materials to find background information. Reference books can help you:
- Explore a topic: find out what has been said about this subject, trends, issues, etc.
- Identify and define unfamiliar terms or people in your reading
- Find references to other books and articles on the subject
- Find specific keywords to use in online searches
Need some more background information about that new concept you learned in class today? Writing a paper on a topic that's new to you? Not sure what topic to choose for your paper? Answer yes to any of these questions, and a subject-specific encyclopedia is the thing for you.
Library encyclopedias and handbooks aren't searchable or freely available on the web, but you can still access many of them online by logging in with your MSU ID...and feel confident using them as a bona-fide scholarly resource that is written by an expert in the field and reviewed for accuracy!
Wikipedia is a common starting point for many people researching a new topic, but unlike scholarly subject-specific encyclopedias, most professors will not allow you to cite Wikipedia in your bibliography. View this video tutorial, Wikipedia: Beneath the Surface, from North Carolina State University Libraries for more information about how Wikipedia works and its information quality.
The library subscribes to a number of online databases that bring together encyclopedias and handbooks from a publisher in one convenient and searchable website.
Criminal Justice Encyclopedias
Encyclopedia of Theoretical Criminology by
Call Number: Online
Publication Date: 2014-04-07
The two-volume Encyclopedia of Theoretical Criminology, available in print and online, is the definitive reference resource for theoretical criminology. This encyclopedia offers a state-of-the-art survey of leading theories, concepts, and key figures in the field. It combines this breadth of coverage with the authority and international perspective of an experienced team of contributors, creating a definitive reference resource for students, scholars, and professionals. Broad coverage spans the origins and evolution of leading theories, major theorists, concepts, applications, and degree of empirical support for both criminology and justice Edited by a leading team of experts in the field and enhanced by contributions from an international group of leading criminology and criminal justice scholars Offers a global perspective from an international team of leading scholars, including coverage of the strong and rapidly growing body of work on criminology in Europe and other areas Includes coverage of theories of justice, crime, applied criminology, and traditional and alternative criminological theories 2 Volumes www.theoreticalcriminology.com
Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment by
Call Number: Online
Publication Date: 2010-01-20
This multivolume set includes hundreds of articles in the field of criminal justice. Addresses such diverse topics as racial profiling, money laundering, torture, prisoner literature, the KGB, and Sing Sing.
Encyclopedia of Criminological Theory by
Call Number: Online
Publication Date: 2010-09-23
Drawing together a team of international scholars, it examines the global landscape of all the key theories and the theorists behind them, presenting them in the context needed to understand their strengths and weaknesses. In addition to interpretations of long-established theories, it also offers essays on cutting-edge research as one might find in a handbook. And, like an unabridged dictionary, it provides concise, to-the-point definitions of key concepts, ideas, schools, and figures. Coverage will include: contexts and concepts in criminological theory the social construction of crime policy implications of theory diversity and intercultural contexts conflict theory rational choice theories conservative criminology feminist theory.
The Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice by
Call Number: HV6017 .E5297 2014
Publication Date: 2014-01-28
Edited by one of criminology's leading authorities, and peer reviewed by a team of 14 associate editors, all of whom are renowned in their fields Brings together an international team of contributors from ten countries to offer a uniquely global perspective on topics such as transnational crime
Criminal Justice Dictionaries
The Concise Dictionary of Crime and Justice by
Call Number: HV6017 .D38 2016
Publication Date: 2015-02-20
A new approach to making everyday criminal justice terms accessible. A useful reference work for faculty and students, criminal justice professionals, writers, and anyone else interested in criminal justice and criminology, The Concise Dictionary of Crime and Justice, Second Edition, is an excellent, wide-ranging resource with clear definitions for over 3,000 key criminal justice terms. Often going beyond simply definitions, the dictionary places the entries in a meaningful context, connecting the definitions with other concepts. The dictionary uniquely presents common misperceptions for selected terms, along with additional relevant information to clarify a term's use or derivation.
The American Dictionary of Criminal Justice by
Call Number: MSU Reference 1 East HV7411 .C48 2005
Publication Date: 2004-11-03
Key terms cut across the following areas: criminal law, criminal justice, forensics, gangs, computers and computer crime, criminal investigations, criminology, criminological theory, corrections, probation and parole, courts and sentencing, rules of criminal procedure, constitutional law, policing and police-community relations, jails and prisons, white-collar crime, sodomy laws, civil rights, tort law, victimization, juvenile law, Section 1983 actions, capital punishment, electronic surveillance, fines and asset forfeiture, deadly force, search and seizure, wrongful convictions, the Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995, and the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996.
Dictionary of criminology by
Call Number: Online
Publication Date: 2011
In professional disciplines, just as in academics, the definition of basic concepts is fundamental for adequate understanding of issues. A dictionary of criminology may be regarded as irrelevant for the simple reason that criminology cannot be said to constitute an academic or professional discipline in East Africa. But this dictionary is not limited to criminological or sociological concepts alone. Just like any academic discipline, it covers other areas of social studies such as law, economics and politics. The dictionary covers some areas that, to the average reader, are least related to law and crime; but to the specialist, even the least likely entry, like race, tribe and democracy is, in some remote way, linked to the incidence of crime, delinquency or deviance.