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AASP 297: Research Methods in African American Studies

This online course tutorial will assist researchers in designing effective research methods for the purpose of locating African American resources.

Background Info, Encyclopedias, and Handbooks

Reference sources are a great way to start your research. They will help you define key terms, identify important themes and individuals in the field, and find keywords for further searching in catalogs and databases. Reference sources also include bibliographies that will help you identify important primary and secondary works in your subject area. Select one of the reference source types below to get started.

Two recommended places to start your research are Gale Virtual Reference and Credo (see "Credo, Gale, and Online Encyclopedias" tab).

References sources of UMCP can be either in print or electronic.  In the area of education, the print Reference Stacks are usually located on the first floor of McKeldin Library; unless the catalog record gives a different location.

UMCP Online Resource is available to UMCP faculty, staff and students only.

Two recommended places to start your research are Gale Virtual Reference and Credo (search below). Additional online encyclopedias are listed below to help you continue your research.

Credo Logo


Credo is an easy-to-use tool for starting research. Use this box to search hundreds of full-text reference titles, as well as 500,000+ images and audio files and over 1,000 videos. It may take a moment to load the results of your search.

Click the button above to visit UMD's portal to the Gale Virtual Reference Library. Once you're there, click the Name link (highlighted in yellow), and then log in with your school ID to access the whole Gale collection.

Below is a selection of general reference sources. If the title is blue, you can click on the link to view the item online. Some items require a UMD Directory ID to access. Otherwise, go to the holding library to use a paper copy.

If any of these materials are not available, order them through Interlibrary Loan.

UMD Libraries has several other guides to help you find more historical research on many topics in African American Studies: