Using Books and Journals as Academic Resources

Anyone involved in an area of study understands the importance of good sources of information. Books, journals, papers, newspapers and documents are often heavily utilized by students at schools and universities. Many of these can now be obtained online.

There is such a wealth of information online it can be difficult to determine what can be considered quality academic resources. Another question is whether the best information can really be obtained for free.

Finding the Best Information

No matter the institution or career field, most people turn to one source for fast information; the Internet. The difficulty in determining the truth of the information has been well established, but what about the quality of the information obtained. Often books, journals, papers, newspapers and documents provided online do not provide a full text. Such academic resources may sometimes be in the form of excerpts or portions due to bandwidth or other issues such as copyright.

Interestingly, some experts in the field of education suggest that a trip to the library might be a better option. This is primarily due to the fact that many academic resources are not freely available online. Visiting a library in person to get access to information is no longer necessary in many places. Libraries now have much of their stack (books, journals, papers, newspaper and documents) in electronic form. These can be accessed online by members of the library.

There is no doubt that books, journals, papers, newspaper and documents can be invaluable as academic resources. The important thing is to ensure that the information is not truncated in any way. The original source material, whether in print form or in electronic form on libraries’ websites, generally offers the full text. So even if the source is found online, the full text is generally available in a database somewhere.

Another option is to use websites that are recognized as academic resources by scholars and universities. Some charge a fee to download full text material, but the information is likely to be better than that available on free search engines.

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