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Oklahoma City University

Environmental Studies

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Articles, Books, the Web and More

Library databases, including GreenFile, Academic Search Complete, Biological Abstracts and Computers & Applied Sciences Complete, and are a major source of high quality information on environmental science and related topics. These include descriptions of of articles published in science research journals and magazines and journals in related fields that provide some of the most dependable and up-to-date information available.

The library's collection of books provides longer works on established practices in the field and on major issues such as science and religion.

The open web can also provide useful and high quality information, although each new website should be examined carefully to verify the authority of the author, the point of view or bias of the sponsor, and the quality of the information.

Reference books and bibliographies provide additional useful information. Check out the "More" tab for links to reliable academic reference resources in print and online. The bibliographies at the end of reference and journal articles are another good source of additional recommended resources on a topic. The "More" tab also offers links and additional advice on writing your paper and evaluating your sources.

Many of the sources linked in this guide are purchased by the library for your use. When you click on these links from a computer not connected through the campus network you will need to identify yourself by entering your campus network username and password. This is the same username and password as you use to access BlueLink and Desire2Learn.

Use the tabs above for more detailed instructions.

Questions? Ideas for Additional Resources?

Contact me:
vswinney@okcu.edu or 405-208-5072

Review the Power Point slides from the library workshop.

General Search

The most current research reports in environmental sciences will be found in journal articles. EBSCOhost includes several databases useful for environmental science research. Type a search in the box or click on the links to search them individually and control your searches more.

Choose a Database (EBSCOhost)

GreenFile is a free database that includes articles on ecology, conservation, and the environment.

Academic Search Complete is a general database that includes many articles related to biology, science, and medicine.

Biological Abstracts is the premier database in biology.

Older Journal Articles

JSTOR includes the Ecology and Botany collection of full text journals in the sciences. All of these articles are full text, but no recent issues are included. (Most articles are not included until 3 to 5 years after publication.)

Open Access Databases

Open Access journals are published directly on the internet and are available for free. The movement is especially strong in the sciences, so several sources of these journal articles may be useful.

Public Library of Science publishes its own series of open access journals in the sciences.

Directory of Open Access Journals is a broad based directory of open access journals in all fields.

Get Complete Articles

Most of the library's collection of science journals is online. You will be able to click on PDF (or sometimes HTML) links in the databases and read, save, email, or print complete articles.

However, a few journals that are not available online are available in the library's collection. Any time you find information about an article that doesn't include a link to the full text (even if you found the information somewhere other than a library database), you can use the library's journals list to find out if we have the journal for the date you need. You will need the title of the journal or magazine (often listed as "source" or italicized, or underlined) and the date and page numbers of the article you want.

The library's journals list can also be browsed by subject. You may find the Environmental Issues list or the Sciences list useful.
We can request any of the articles we don't own through Interlibrary Loan. Most items arrive in the library in 3 days to 3 weeks. If you can't wait, you may also have the option of purchasing full text access one article at a time directly from the publisher's web site.

Browse Current Titles

Current issues of magazines and journals are shelved alphabetically by title on the "periodical" shelves on the first floor of the library. These titles include:
Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science

Search for Print and Online Books

Search the Library Catalog using the search box above. The catalog includes all of the books and videos in the library's physical collection and over 1000 online environmental science titles through Ebrary.

Search Ebrary for online books the library owns.

Browse The National Academies Press for free online versions of reports from the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council. You can browse topics or use the search box to find books by key word.

Search WorldCat to find books in the collections of most of the world's libraries. Use the "borrow this time from another library" link to request a copy of anything you find. Most items arrive in 3 days to 3 weeks.

Browse the Shelves

Browsing the shelves is another good option. Books are arranged by Dewey Decimal numbers:

Dewey Decimal Numbers for Environmental Science
354 Administration of economy & environment
500 Natural sciences & mathematics
508 Natural history
540 Chemistry & allied sciences
550 Earth Sciences
570 Life Sciences
577 Ecology
578 Natural history of organisms
580 Plants (Botany)
590 Animals (Zoology)
630 Agriculture & related technologies
634 Orchards, fruits, forestry
639 Hunting, fishing, conservation

Locations for environmental science materials
1st floor Reference
3rd floor Circulating Collection
5th floor Oversize Collection (for items too tall for regular shelves)
basement storage Historic Circulating Materials

Government Science & Environment Web Sites

Science Information Databases
Environmental Conservation Online System from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
USDA Plants Database

Agency Web Sites
Environmental Protection Agency
Fish and Wildlife Service

Environmental Organization Web Sites

Amphibia Web (created in conjunction with the Digital Library Project at the University of California, Berkeley)
IUCN Red List of threatened and endangered species
World Database on Protected Areas (use with caution, the site is user edited)

Organization Web Sites (remember to consider point of view and bias!)
Environmental Defense Fund
International Union for Conservation of Nature
National Wildlife Federation
Sierra Club
United Nations Environmental Programme
World Health Organization (United Nations)

Singapore Related Web Sites

General Information and News Sources
Singapore Infopedia from the National Library of Singapore
Singapore Straits Times

Government Environmental Agency Sources
Singapore Environment Council

Non-governmental Environmental Organizations
Nature Society

Access General Academic Research on the Web

Google Scholar (books and articles)
WorldCat (books in libraries worldwide)

Online Reference Books

Oxford Reference Online provides authoritative definitions and background information and includes more in-depth information in the Encyclopedia of Climate and Weather, which provides background information on climate and weather. Check the bibliographies of longer articles for references to the most important books and articles on the subject.

Print Reference Books

R 578.68 B353
Beacham, Walton and Kirk H. Beetz, eds. Beacham's Guide to International Endangered Species. Osprey, Fla.: Beacham, 1998.

R 578.680973 B353
Beacham, Walton, Frank V. Castronova and Suzanne Sessine, eds. Beacham's Guide to the Endangered Species of North America. Detroit: Gale Group, 2000.

R 591.68 En19
Emanoil, Mary, ed. Encyclopedia of Endangered Species. Detroit : Gale Research, 1994-1999.

Writing and Citation Help

The Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL) offers help in many areas of writing. Especially useful

Evaluating Web Resources

Review the content, layout, links to and from, and the “about” section of the website and ask yourself these questions.


  • Who wrote it?
  • Why should we believe them?
  • What is their educational background?
  • Have they written in scholarly, peer reviewed venues?


  • Who are they?
    • .gov – US government agency
    • .gov.sg – Singapore government agency
    • .edu – US educational institutions (may include student and faculty web pages)
    • .edu.sg – Singapore educational institution
    • .ac.uk – UK educational institutions
    • .org – US nonprofit organizations (be aware of potential bias)
    • .org.sg – Singapore nonprofit organizations
    • .com – US commercial enterprises (includes reputable publishers, news organizations, and anyone with a little money and the desire for a web site)
    • .com.sg – Singapore commercial enterprises
    • .co.uk – UK commercial enterprises (includes reputable publishers, news organizations, and anyone with a little money and the desire for a web site)
  • Where are they?
    • Is there a physical address?
    • Do they exist outside of the internet?
  • Why are they providing this information?
    • Do they sell advertising?
    • Do they promote a particular point of view?
    • Do they sell their information? If so, who buys it?
  • Why should we believe them?

Recommendations / Content:

  • Who recommends the site?
  • Who links to it?
  • Do the facts match those presented in known reliable sources?
  • Are there obvious flaws in content or logic?
  • Is the content obviously outdated?

Want more detailed advice? Check out the University of California at Berkeley library’s guide to Evaluating Web Pages.

Evaluation Exercise:


  • Which of these links come from credible sources? Why?
  • Which have credible authors? Why?
  • Which have a high level of information credibility? Why?

Sample sites:

  1. What is GMO?
  2. Genetically Modified Crops
  3. WHO: Food, Genetically modified
  4. Genetically Modified Food...
  5. ageconsearch
  6. Genetically Modified Crops
  7. Genetically engineered crops in...
  8. The Economic Journal

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