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ANTH 223: Primates

Resources to Support Your ANTH 223 Projects

Workshop Materials

Locating and obtaining resources not available through Vassar Libraries:

  • Interlibrary Loan (ILL)
    • Books, articles, film, dissertations and other resources not available at Vassar. ILLiad is our ILL platform.
  • WorldCat
    • The "world's catalog"; a great resource for locating books.
  • Purchase Request Form
    • Please complete for books/ebooks, films and more, especially if you plan to heavily rely on the item and would like to borrow the resource for a longer period of time.
  • NY Library catalogs
    • Every college student in NY, regardless of your home state, can apply for a New York Public Library (NYPL) card. This allows you to access NYPL online resources and request to view items in person.
  • Center for Research Libraries (CRL)
    • A large research collection that includes an international newspaper archive.
  • HathiTrust
    • A great and free online repository for older materials, especially those within the public domain. 
  • Internet Archive
    • A surprisingly good source for ebooks from the 1950's-early 2000's, radio shows/podcasts and other miscellaneous resources. Access may require free account creation. 

You will likely go through the search process a number of times, performing different searches with different keyword combinations, to address the different components of your topic.

Systematic Searching Handsearching
#1 Identify your question. Identify the key concepts and related terms. Tip:  You may want to re-phrase your question. Background reading can help you identify related terms and further define or narrow your topic.  Explore reference lists to locate other articles, books, or authors who have written on the same topic. 
#2 Find an appropriate search tool. Consider your subject matter, discipline of study, type of information needed (e.g. peer reviewed articles) Locate cited research in reference lists/bibliographies and citing literature (WoS or Google Scholar) to view past and more recent similar or adjacent research.

#3 Start with a simple search based on your key concepts. Tip: You may also have to look at literature that refers to one (not all) aspects of your research question.

Browse the table of contents of relevant journals and special issues.

#4 Use specific search strategies.

  • Use AND to join dissimilar terms.
  • Use OR to join synonyms or related terms.
  • Truncate words with * to pick up variations of that word. 
  • Use "quotation marks" for phrase searching
  • Use database limiters e.g. limit to scholarly journals. 
  • Consider searching in a specific field e.g. title (article title) or source (journal title.)
Review bibliographies or reading lists to locate recommended or key resources.
#5 Search and skim results. Look for the language and terms that researchers use and that the database assigns to articles (Subjects). Locate an expert Locate an expert the the field and browse their publications.  
#6 Switch up your searches.  Use promising new terminologyYour search may become more sophisticated.  


Original Research Article - Most often published in peer reviewed journals, original research articles report on the findings of a scientist's work or experiment.  They will almost always include a description of how the research was done and what the results mean.

Review articles - Published in peer reviewed journals, but seek to synthesize and summarize the work of a particular sub-field, rather than report on new results. Can provide helpful background information. 

Editorials/Opinion/Commentary/Perspectives – An article expressing the author's view about a particular issue. These articles can be well researched and include a lot of citations to the peer reviewed literature, or simple items without citations, but are not themselves peer reviewed.

Brief Communications or News – Science news articles can be found in a wide variety of publications.  Popular newspapers and magazines, trade publications and scholarly publications can all have science news articles.  These articles often will refer to a recent study published as a primary research article. These articles are typically short and written in language a general audience can understand.


  • Does the article have an abstract?
  • Does the article have a materials and methods section?
  • Are there references? Are they cited in the article?
  • Who is the intended audience? How can you tell?
  • What are the author’s/authors’ credentials and association?
  • Does the article present original research or is it a review?
  • Does the article indicate when it was submitted for publication and when it was accepted?


One of the best places to find out if a journal is peer-reviewed is to go to the journal's website (just Google the journal title).

Most publishers have a website for a journal that tells you about the journal, how authors can submit an article, and what the process is for getting published.

On the journal's website, look for the link that says "information for authors," "instructions for authors," "submitting an article" or something similar. Then look for the term "peer-reviewed" in the description of the journal.

Journal peer-review statement

From, “BHS 110 Orientation: Types Of Scholarly Sources” by Oregon State University Libraries & Press, used under CC BY-NC 4.0. Information.

Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License by Justina Elmore, University of Rochester.  Adapted from Kristin M. Woodward & Kate Ganski's "What Could A Writer Do With This Source?" cc-by-4.0.

AI Evaluation Criteria : ROBOT

Hervieux, & Wheatley, A. (2022). The Rise of AI: Implications and Applications of Artificial Intelligence in Academic Libraries (Vol. 78). ACRL.


  • How reliable is the information about the AI technology?
  • If it’s not produced by the party responsible for the AI, what are the author’s credentials? Is there author bias?
  • If it is produced by the party responsible for the AI, how much information are they making available? Is information only partially available due to trade secrets? How biased is the information they produce?


  • What is the goal or objective of the use of AI?
  • What is the goal of sharing information about it? To inform? To convince? To find financial support?


  • What could create bias in the AI technology?
  • Are there ethical issues associated with this?
  • Are biases or ethical issues acknowledged? By the source of information? By the party responsible for the AI? By its users?


  • Who is the owner or developer of the AI technology?
  • Who is responsible for it? Is it a private company? The government? A think tank or research group?
  • Who has access to it? Who can use it?


  • Which subtype of AI is it?
  • Is the technology theoretical or applied?
  • What kind of information system does it rely on?
  • Does it rely on human intervention?

AI Considerations: 

  • Consider creating accounts not with your personal information; use a burner email account or a group account if appropriate.
  • If you decide to use an AI tool, it could potentially be useful at the start of your research as a jumping off point to explore other resources, or at the end of your research process to see if the tool provides any additional sources that you missed in your research. 
    • In many ways, this is similar to how I recommend using GoogleScholar, to supplement database searching, to potentially identify keywords, and to see if anything surprising comes up the search results.

AI Research Tools: 

Below are a few freely available AI tools that have been developed to support the research process that can compliment (but not replace) your research efforts. 

  1. Research Rabbit: citation & author networks

  2. Semantic Scholar:  AI-driven literature search

  3. Elicit: AI research assistant; free but with paid options

Reference Sources

Primates News: Wisconsin National Primate Research Center

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