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Research Guides

Natural Resources & Society: Research Methods

A guide to information associated with the human dimensions of natural resources. These include the political, social, economic, philosophical, recreational and policy aspects of conservation, sustainability and environmental sciences.

Methods Reference Books

Check out Sage Research Methods Online for these and other research methods books.

Sage Glossary Sage Handbook of Qualitative
The SAGE Handbook of Mixed Methods in Social & Behavioral Research

The Sage Encyclopedia of Qualitative Research Methods

Sage Measurement and Statistics
Encyclopedia of Measurement and Statistics Encyclopedia of Survey Research Methods


 The UI Library Catalog also has research methods books available for checkout.

Other Resources

Dictionary of Sociology Dictionary of Statistics
Handbook of Emergent Technologies in Social Research Research Design: qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods approaches
The handbook of emergent technologies in social research Research design : qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches

Other books can be found in the library catalog (includes both print and electronic).

Sage Research Methods Online

SAGE Research Methods is a research methods tool created to help researchers, faculty and students with their research projects. SAGE Research Methods links over 175,000 pages of SAGE’s book, journal and reference content with advanced search and discovery tools.

Searching for Specific Methods

You want to find examples of specific methods being used.  The best way to do this is not to do a keyword search, but to do subject or descriptor search.

Librarians and indexers assign subjects using specific language, called a controlled vocabulary or thesaurus.  For example, library catalogs use the Library of Congress Subject Headings to organize books into categories.  Most article databases use database-specific subject headings.

The goal is to provide a structured way of searching.  For example, if you searched for Silent Spring by Rachel Carson, the word 'environment' or 'pesticide' doesn't appear in the title.  However, if you search for books with a subject of "Environmental Health" or "Pesticides", Silent Spring will be classified within this subject.

Sociological Abstracts - the largest and most comprehensive sociology database - has a very helpful thesaurus of terms to help you focus on searching for a specific research method.  Simply browse the list and select the terms you want to use for a search.

You simply add the terms using the button provided (not shown here) and then search.  You can usually add other keywords, place names, etc to further narrow your search results.

This process is similar in nearly all major indexes, including: