Spring 2023 Hours
There are two ways to get assistance from the library's peer research advisors: drop-in hours or appointments.
BEAM is an acronym intended to help you think about the various ways you might use sources when writing a researched argument. Joseph Bizup, an English professor at Boston University, outlined the framework in a 2008 article. The idea has since been refined and adapted by many others.
Different academic disciplines will value different aspects of sources and how one uses them. The discipline of history privileges the two vowels in the BEAM framework:
EXHIBIT: Historians analyze and interpret primary sources.
ARGUMENT: Historians join a scholarly conversation by placing their analysis and interpretation in dialog with the work of other historians. Historians publish their work in the form of scholarly articles and monographs (scholarly books).
Tertiary sources, such as subject encyclopedias and textbooks, are excellent starting points in your research. Use them to find:
At Collins Library, you can access subject encyclopedias in a variety of formats: print, ebook, or via larger digital collections.
Print encyclopedias are located on the first floor of the library, across from the Learning Commons. Most recently published reference works are available digitally.
Online encyclopedias can be accessed via PRIMO, the library's discovery platform. An example:
Large digital collections of subject encyclopedias can be accessed via several publisher-based platforms: