Christopher.Lyons [at] mcgill.ca (Email)• 514-398-4475 x09847
- McGill users only
- Open access resource
- Free resource
- In-library-use only
- Catalogue record
Starting your research
Have a topic that you might be interested in exploring? Need more background information about a particular reading? Here are some useful reference books to help you brainstorm and do preliminary research on potential areas of interest or provide general background information:
- Dictionary of Medical Biography
- Cambridge World History of Human Disease
- Oxford Companion to the History of Modern Science
- The Cambridge Dictionary of Scientists
- Trois siècles d’histoire médicale au Québec : chronologie des institutions et des pratiques, 1639-1939
- Dictionary of Canadian Biography
- Canadian Health Obituaries Index File
Using the library catalogue and databases
Once you've brainstormed a topic and keywords, you can begin your search in the McGill library catalogue and in relevant article databases.
e.g. histor? will retrieve catalogue records containing the words history, histories, historical, etc.
e.g. "New Brunswick" will retrieve only catalogue records containing the entire phrase New Brunswick
(), AND, OR, NOT
e.g. history AND (Canada OR "United States") will retrieve catalogue records containing the word history plus either Canada OR the phrase United States. Remember: AND will make your search narrower and OR will make your search wider.
Next, try these article databases and indexes to find journal literature:
- History of Science, Technology and Medicine
- Isis Cumulative Bibliographies of the History of Science (1913-1965) (1966-1975) (1986-1995) Categorized listing of articles in history of science
- MEDLINE Major index of journal articles in medicine and related fields. Can be used for history of medicine, but be careful of provenance of articles (i.e. written by non-historians)
- America: History and Life General Canadian and United States history
- Secondary Sources in the History of Canadian Medicine (Volume 1) (Volume 2)
- Academic Search Complete Large, multidisciplinary ful-text database
- Proquest Research Library Large, multidisciplinary full-text database
Remember different journal databases contain different journals, so you should always check more than one database.
Connecting to databases from home: Consult Accessing online resources.
Here are a couple more practical resources for help with language skills, writing skills, and completing assignments.
For citing sources:
- Chicago Manual of Style Online
- Chicago/Turabian Citation Style Guide Abridged guide from McGill.
- List of citation guides available at McGill
For using reference management software to store and organize your resources:
- Information and comparison of citation managers
- EndNote citation manager (software supported by McGill)
For help in academic writing: