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REL 205: Introduction to Jewish Studies: Getting Started

Recommended Resources and Strategies for the Jewish Nations group presentations

Project Tips

  • Begin with the end in mind.  You have two related deliverables--an oral presentation and an online interactive map or timeline.  Your goal with both is to create a concise but compelling narrative--a story about people--not a mere recitation of facts or a written report.
  • Generate multiple possibilities for each required element of the project.  For example, you know you will create at least two slides related to historical events and/or people.  Prior to a group meeting, each member might identify from the readings two possibilities and present them to the group, explaining why you chose them.  In the resulting discussion, you'll be able to critically evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each possibility and achieve consensus.
  • Do your research and gather multimedia before you begin to build the StoryMapJS or the TimelineJS (or another digital tool).  You want to be the ones in charge of the narrative, and not let the required components of the tool dictate the content!
  • Don't be afraid to try out different prototypes or to re-order slides or to switch out media or to revise text.  You aren't done until everyone is satisfied!

Key Subject Encyclopedia

Start your research with the Encyclopaedia Judaica!  Entries on specific countries (India, Morocco, United States, etc.) tend to be substantial and include cross references and very helpful bibliographies.

Scholarly Secondary Source

You have a few strategies for identifying scholarly secondary sources.  Each member of the group may wish to identify one possible source to bring to the group, and then everyone can discuss which ones would be best to use.

1.  Use Primo to find books or chapters in books listed in the bibliography of the entry in Encyclopaedia Judaica.

2.  Search a subject database, like the ATLA religion database, to identify scholarly articles.

3.  If you aren't sure if a source is scholarly, ask a librarian, a peer research advisor, or your professor.

Primary Sources (including multimedia)

StoryMapJS can ingest and display images, videos, and audio clips.  If your chosen cultural artifact is a text, try to find the most visually engaging image of that text.  Use multimedia which is out of copyright, or carries a Creative Commons license, or for which educational use is permitted.  Good places to look for unrestricted sources include:

Wikimedia Commons

Internet Archive

Creative Commons Search

Associate Director for Public Services

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Peggy Burge
Collins Library 119

Work with a Peer Research Advisor!

Spring 2023 Hours
There are two ways to get assistance from the library's peer research advisors:  drop-in hours or appointments.

Drop-in Hours:
7-8 pm, Sunday through Tuesday, Library 118.
Go to the library appointment scheduler and select Caroline, Kai, or Neil to see their availability.

Peer Research Advisors