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History Research Guide
Starting Your Research
History research can be some of the most challenging of all the disciplines. Searching for the information you need can take you to places you never dreamed due to history's interdisciplinary nature. In this Internet Age, there can still be roadblocks to getting what you need as not everything is digitized, in a language you can read, or free access.
Never fear! These pages will help you get started and you can always ask for help from any of the CSUSM librarians.
A nice overview of historical research is at William Cronon's "Learning Historical Research" page.
Contrary to wide-spread opinion, materials found on the Internet are not free for any use. They may be at no-cost, but you must still gain permission and attribute your sources.
The principle of "Fair Use" allows for a limited amount of use for educational (not-for-profit) purposes.
Copyright and Fair Use
Image Rights (Harvard)
How I Learned to Love Fair Use (Mary Minow at Stanford explains how to determine fair use)
Statement on Standards of Professional Conduct (American Historical Association) applies to students as much as it applies to professionals.
Oral History Society: Is Your Oral History Legal and Ethical? While addressing issues in the United Kingdom, these still apply to US historians.
Ethical Blogging: Sourcing Images is oriented towards bloggers, but offers tips on copyright, ethical use, and sources for everyone.
Philadelphia Historical Digital Image Library Statement of Use and Reproduction (Sample of usage permissions)
University of Chicago Author's Permissions Guidelines (publisher of the Chicago Manual of Style)
Chicago/Turabian Style Guides
The Chicago Manual of Style is the preference for most history researchers, but always check with your professor before proceeding on both citation style and which version. The Notes-Bibliography system is generally preferred in Chicago-style citations, but there is also an Author-Date system. These systems use different formatting, so be sure which your professor prefers.
IMPORTANT! Late 2010, University of Chicago Press issued a new edition for this style guide. Check your resources to make sure you are being given the latest information based on the 16th edition as not all sites have updated yet. Notable changes are listed here.
Chicago may be referred to as Turabian, after Kate Turabian, who wrote a manual for students for research, writing and citing sources based on the Chicago citation style. The current version is titled A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations: Chicago Style for Students and Researchers. The CSUSM library keeps a copy at the Research Help Desk at LB2369 .T8 2007 and a copy on permanent Reserves (Checkout Desk.)
Some helpful web sites:
Chicago-Style Citation Quick Guide (University of Chicago, the publishers of the Manual, this is based on the 16th edition)
Diana Hacker's Research and Documentation Online: Chicago Style (offers both help on manuscript formatting and citation guidelines)
Citing Electronic Information in History Papers (U of Memphis, varies slightly from the guidelines of the 16th edition.)
Chicago Manual of Style Citation Guide (Ohio University Libraries)