So you want to study history?! OK, here's how!

    updated: 7/10/19 Historical Research

    Table of Contents

    1. Why Study History
    2. Analyzing Primary Sources
    3. Proper Citations, Plagiarism, and Ethics
    4. Research and Writing
    5. Oral History
    6. Online Research Tools/Finding Aids
    7. Citation Forms for Print and Electronic Sources
    8. Professional Issues and Concerns
    9. Teaching History
    10. Public History: History in 3-D
    11. Grant Writing
    12. Job Hunting

    Why Study History?

  1. Why Study History?" by Peter N. Stearns
  2. The Utility of Historical Perspective by Dr. Kenneth Pomeranz, President, American Historical Association, 2013.
  3. How your history course teaches what employers want
  4. A Degree in History: Your Ticket to the Unpredictable Future
  5. What is history and why should we care? A short intro to a big field
  6. Major historians explalin history
  7. Quotations on the Definition and Use of History
  8. Core Skillls of the History Discipline What are the essential skills of a student of history? [from the American Historical Association, 2013]
    1. Engage in historical inquiry, research, and analysis.
    2. Practice historical empathy.
    3. Understand the complex nature of the historical record.
    4. Generate significant, open-ended questions about the past and devise research strategies to answer them.
    5. Craft historical narrative and argument.
    6. Practice historical thinking as central to engaged citizenship.

    Examine the link above for specifics and examples of these skills and expectations. "History is a set of evolving rules and tools that allows us to interpret the past with clarity, rigor, and an appreciation for interpretative debate. It requires evidence, sophisticated use of information, and a deliberative stance to explain change and continuity over time. As a profoundly public pursuit, history is essential to active and empathetic citizenship and requires effective communication to make the past accessible to multiple audiences. As a discipline, history entails a set of professional ethics and standards that demand peer review, citation, and toleration for the provisional nature of knowledge." [American Historical Assocation History Tuning Project]
  9. Metahistory and the Philosophy of World History

    Analyzing Primary Sources

  10. Constructivism/IGL: Our Approach to History
  11. Making Sense of Evidence History Matters
  12. Why Study History Through Primary Sources ? [Adapted from James Harvey Robinson, "The Historical point of View", in Readings in European History, Vol I, (Boston: Ginn, 1904), pp.1-13]
  13. Analyzing Historical Documents
  14. Becoming a Historian --Plimonth Plantation
  15. Primary and Secondary Sources
  16. Tutorial on Historical Research Primary and Secondary Sources, Ohio State University Library
  17. Citation Formats for Print and Electronic Sources

  18. The University of Chicago or Turabian citation style
  19. Chicago Manual of Style FAQs
  20. Columbia University Press Citation Guide
  21. Andrew Harnack and Eugene Kleppinger's Online: A Reference Guide to Using Internet Sources
  22. Stet: UNC Press Handbook for Authors
  23. Citing Electronic Information in History Papers by Maurice Crousem, Department of History, The University of Memphis
  24. Better Menu of many online citation guides
  25. Citing E-Documents Excerpts from International Standard ISO 690-2, Information and documentation -- Bibliographic references -- Part 2: Electronic documents or parts thereof
  26. "History Matters" Reference Desk: Citing Digital Resources / Copyright and Fair Use Information / Evaluating Digital Resources / Standards-History and Social Studies

    Research and Writing

  27. The Five I's of Historical Research and Writing PDF/ 1. Inquire 2. Investigate 3. Integrate 4. Incorporate 5. Interpret
  28. A Step-by-Step Guide to Doing Historical Research [without getting hysterical]
  29. WRITING HISTORICAL ESSAYS: A GUIDE FOR UNDERGRADUATES by Professors Matt Matsuda and John Gillis Rutgers University
  30. How to Write a History Essay
  31. Catherine Lavender's suggestions on historical thinking, research, and writing
  32. The Qualities of Good Historical Writing by Barzun and Graff
  33. Reading, Writing and Researching for History by Patrick Rael
  34. Writing in History Courses from "Writing in the Arts and Sciences at Marquette: A Sampling of Advice from Faculty"
  35. Doing History Effectively by Dale L. Clifford
  36. A Sense of History: Some Components by Gerald W. Schlabach, University of St. Thomas (Minn.)
  37. More Guidance on Historical Research and Writing

    Oral History

  38. Principles for Oral History and Best Practices for Oral History Oral History Association, Adopted October, 2009
  39. Web Guides to Doing Oral History
  40. Smithsonian Oral History Interview Guide Downloadable as a 35-page PDF document
  41. Online Research Tools/Finding Aids

  42. History Section, D. H. Hill Electronic Databases Page. Scroll down the alphabetical list to locate databases of interest.
  43. America: History and Life Bibliographical Database Yields annotated bibliography of books and articles on US history and culture, with coverage of US-Latin American relations, Latinos, immigration, and border issues.
  44. Historical Abstracts May also be accessed from America: History and Life. Covers non-US history, including extensive coverage of Latin America. Yields annotated bibliography of good scholarly journals and books.
  45. Ingenta Bibliographical database of scholarly and popular articles published since 1988. Do keyword searches.
  46. Google Scholar's advanced search
  47. JSTOR Search Page Search for and access full texts of scholarly articles.
  48. Doc Scribe's Guides to Research Writing and Style A quick, simple guide to many citation formats. Pick one and stick with it!
  49. Ten C's For Evaluating Internet Sources
  50. Yale University Library Tutorial on Using Archival and Manuscript Sources
  51. Intro to NCSU Email List Services Using Majordomo 2

    Proper Citations, Plagiarism and Ethics

  52. How to avoid plagiarism
  53. Plagiarism Page by Sherman Dorn
  54. Plagiarism and Anti-Plagiarism Rutgers University. Excellent tips on how to identify e-plagiarism, such as papers copied from the Internet
  55. US Copyright Office
  56. Copyright and the Public Domain A very useful site from Cornell University
  57. Copyright Website
  58. Stanford Fair Use Site Keyword searchable site with extensive links and good, clear information.
  59. Linking Rights
  60. Association of Research Libraries Copyright Links

    Professional Issues and Concerns

  61. American Historical Association wide range of online publications and information on all aspects of the profession
  62. 2005 Statement on Standards of Professional Conduct, American Historical Association, approved by Professional Division, December 9, 2004 and adopted by Council, January 6, 2005:
    1. The Profession of History
    2. Shared Values of Historians
    3. Scholarship
    4. Plagiarism
    5. Teaching
    6. History in the Public Realm
    7. Employment
    8. Reputation and Trust
    9. Additional Guidance
  63. National Archives and Records Administration
  64. Thinking about a doctoral program? Extensive links and discussions to help you.
  65. Organization of American Historians "La Pietra" Report Why and how to globalize US history-- a must read! Good advise on thinking more broadly and intelligently about history.
  66. Redefining Historical Scholarship Report of the American Historical Association Ad Hoc Committee on Redefining Scholarly Work December 1993
  67. Historically Speaking, a new online history newsletter from the Historical Society that began publishing in 1999.
  68. Conference Alerts Looking for professional conferences to attend or make a presentation?
  69. Teaching History

  70. National Council for History Education
  71. Public History: History in 3-D

  72. Historic Preservation Links

  73. Read Dr. Slatta's brief definition of public history, as well as other definitions.
  74. Public History Graduate Program at NC State Click on "Links" for access to many NC and national public history sites.
  75. Archives Made Easy Worldwide links
  76. A list of museums worldwide
  77. American Association of Museums
  78. American Association of State and Local History
  79. National Council on Public History
  80. Repositories of Primary Sources Links to archives and special collections everywhere
  81. Society for History in the Federal Government

    Grant Writing

  82. Advice from CPB
  83. Writing a Successful Grant Proposal
  84. Non-Profit Guide to Grant Writing
  85. Job Hunting

  86. Wall Street Journal Career Journal Excellent tips on job hunting, resume and cover letter writing, and other professional skills.
  87. US Bureau of Labor: Public Historians
  88. "The Humanities at Work" Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation publication, which includes public history employment opportunities
  89. Public History Resource Center Employment site and much more