This guide provides information and links to a selection of resources and services to help with your thesis research. If you have any questions about the libraries or about doing research at Harvard, please don't hesitate to ask.
Hugh Truslow

Finding Literature Reviews & Annotated Bibliographies

The following sources will help you find key sources and scholars on a subject by getting you to literature reviews and annoated bibliographies.

  • Annual Review of Sociology offers comprehensive collections of critical reviews written by leading scholars.
  • Web of Science published by the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI), is a multidisciplinary database, covering the journal literature of the sciences, social sciences and arts. You can also search the databases for articles that cite a known author or work.
  • Oxford Bibliographies. Sociology presents annotated bibliographies prepared by scholars who have chosen the key sources in a subject area.

Finding Scholarly Sources


This is a selection of resources for finding journals articles. If you are interested in finding additional resources, try the All Databases section of the Library site.

Sociology and Related Disciplines

  • Sociological Abstracts is a core resource in sociology, social planning/policy, and related disciplines. It includes citations and abstracts from over 1800 journals, relevant dissertations, books and book chapters, and association papers.

  • Econlit is a comprehensive source for the world's economic literature, produced by the American Economic Association. It includes coverage of over 600 journals, book reviews, dissertations and working papers.

  • ERIC provides citations and abstracts from over 750 education journals and related documents from the Educational Resource Information Center from 1967 to the present.

  • GenderWatch is a full text database of unique and diverse publications that focus on the impact of gender across a broad spectrum of subject areas. The database provides abstracts and the full text of some 175 scholarly journals, magazines, newspapers, and conference proceedings, and more.

  • Race Relations Abstracts provides indexing to "essential areas related to race relations, including ethnic studies, discrimination, immigration studies, and other areas of key relevance to the discipline." Some 40,000 records are included.

  • PAIS (Public Affairs Information Service) indexes the public and social policy literature of public administration, political science, economics, finance, international relations, law, and health care.


  • Web of Science (Citation Indexes) is a multidisciplinary database indexing major journals in the Sciences, Social Sciences and the Humanities. It allows you to find who has cited an article since its publication.
  • HOLLIS is Harvard's online search engine for our physical and online collections.
  • Google Scholar enables you to search for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts and technical reports from all broad areas of research. GoogleScholar also enables citation searching.
  • ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global indexes dissertations and masters' theses from most North American graduate schools as well as some European universities. Provides full text for most indexed dissertations from 1990-present.



At Harvard
When you are looking for books and articles on a topic, use the default search in HOLLIS, which is a keyword search. Once you have done a search, note the "facets" on the right side of the page. Selecting a facet enables you to narrow your search by language, source type, subject, etc.

Beyond Harvard
For books not currently available at Harvard, you make make a request through Borrow Direct to borrow it from a small network of other university libraries.

If you find an item in another library that you think the Harvard Library should own, please submit a Collections Purchase Request.

Finding Data

For assistance with finding and using data resources and government documents in the library, please contact Diane Sredl, Data Reference Librarian at govdoc@fas.harvard.edu.  Here are a couple of the research guides created to assist you with finding data:

Below is a list of a few of the data resources available to you:

  • ProQuest Statistical Insight is a bibliographic database that indexes and abstracts the statistical content of selected United States government publications, state government, business, association and intergovernmental publications.
  • Roper Center for Public Opinion provides access to summary-level (aggregate) and micro-level (raw) public opinion data. The Roper Center resources require users to set up individual accounts in order to gain access to the data.
  • General Social Survey (GSS) has been monitoring societal change in the United states since 1972. It is one of the most frequently analyzed sources of information in the social sciences and is used by legislators, policymakers, researchers, educators.

Selected News Resources

Factiva is a database of over 8,000 business and news publications, most in full text. Sources are in 22 languages, date back as far as 1969, and include trade journals, newswires (Dow Jones, Reuters, and others), media programs, and company reports.

Nexis Uni features  more than 15,000 news, business and legal sources from LexisNexis--including U.S. Supreme Court decisions dating back to 1790--with an interface that offers quick discovery across all content types, personalization features such as Alerts and saved searches and a collaborative workspace with shared folders and annotated documents.

Thousands of historical newspapers from the U.S. The strength of this tool is the inclusion of many small town papers.

Alt-Press Watch is a full text database of the newspapers, magazines, and journals of the alternative and independent press. As a current and retrospective collection, Alt-Press Watch serves a broad spectrum of subject areas including the arts, media and popular culture, business and labor studies, education, environmental studies and ecology, global studies, history, journalism, literary and critical studies, political science, government and public policy, social science and more.

Ethnic NewsWatch is an interdisciplinary, bilingual (English and Spanish), and comprehensive full text database of the newspapers, magazines, and journals of theethnic, minority, and native press.

Helpful Services & Tools