Selected Resources for Background & Overviews

These are resources that are especially helpful when you are getting started in a subject area. Start with a general search and then narrow in if you are getting too many results.

Oxford Bibliographies Online: Psychology is part of a series of selective online guides to the essential literature in subjects in the humanities and social sciences.

Annual Review of Psychology is part of a series offering comprehensive, timely collections of critical reviews written by leading scholars in the sciences and social sciences.

Key Journal Databases

In most academic fields, but especially in the sciences, journal literature is the primary means of communicating new findings, revisions to old theories, and the success (or failure) of experimental replications. Journal articles provide the crucial updating function necessary for responsible research.

For a brief introduction to peer review see, Making Sense of Science Stories.


PsycInfo is the premier database for locating research and scholarship in psychology and its many subfields, PsycInfo is produced by the American Psychological Association. Coverage includes items from over 1800 journals in more than 24 languages. Content dates back to 1872 for some journals.


HOLLIS enables you to search books, articles, images, and other materials in a variety of formats in the Harvard Library collection. Remember to sign in for full access.

Web of Science is a database that enables you to search across nearly thousands of widely read and often cited academic journals. Coverage is particularly strong in science related fields, including psychology.  One of the special features of Web of Science is the ability to do citation searching in order to discover how many times and by whom an article has been cited since its publication.

Academic Search Premier is a multi-disciplinary database that includes material from over 4,700 publications (journals, magazines and newspapers) both popular and scholarly. Full text is available for more than 3,600 of the publications.

Writing & Citing

Writing Guides
From the Harvard College Writing Center:

Citing and Using Sources

Helpful Services & Tools

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