UCB Libraries

ARCH 3114 - History and Theories of Architecture I: SMALL

Need additional assistance? Ask a Librarian right now, or Schedule a Research Consulation with the Art & Architecture Librarian.


  • Building Info
  • Style & Type Info
  • Context
  • Images
  • Citing

Your Assignment

You'll need to research the basic facts of the specific building you select.


Much of the best information will be contained in books. However there is likely not going to be an entire book written on your building.


To find books search for larger categories that are likely to contain your building. For example, this could be the architect or the style. Or use other tools like google books to search within books.

Library Catalogs


Chinook is the catalog for books and other materials owned by the CU Libraries. Articles are not in Chinook. Search for more broad subjects.


Google Books

Allows you to search within a book for content. This is important for specific buildings because it will allow you to find out if it is talked about in a book but not the main focus. Once you find a book, check our library to see if we own that book.



If you search Chinook and find that the CU Libraries do not have the item you are looking for (or if the item you are looking for is checked out), you can search Prospector, which is a combined library catalog of 23 libraries in Colorado and Wyoming. Once requested, the items will generally be delivered to Norlin within a few business days.


Finding Articles & Magazines

Articles will be a good source for finding information about your example projects because they will be much more specfic than books, and will often be written about a specific building.


The following databases are the best places for you to search for articles for this class.


Use the "Find it at CU" button to search for full text. If there is no digital version available click "Document Delivery/ILL" to request a scanned PDF be e-mailed to you.

Article Databases

Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals

The primary resource for finding architectural articles.

Finding Plans, Drawings and Images: The advanced search page in Avery Index includes physical description check boxes for axonometric drawings, plans, elevations, maps, sketches and more.

Art Full Text
An excellent general resource for art, art history, architecture, and related topics.



A full-text archive of important scholarly publications in the humanities and social sciences. It covers far fewer journals and so is best used when you need to be able to search the full-text of articles.



Need more databases? Check out all our databases organized by subject here.


Accessing Resources from Off Campus
In order to use the databases listed below (and any other licensed resources provided by the library), you MUST download, install, and run VPN software. For more information about VPN, please see the library's page on Off Campus Access.


Go on to researching Style and Type Info >>


Your Assignment

If you decide to do a particular Style or Type, you'll need to find a range of information about it.

Background Research

Reference sources such as encyclopedias and timelines will help you get the basic info on your style and place it in its historical context.
Encyclopedias & Timelines

Oxford Art Online

An extensive online encyclopedia of Art & Architecture. It will be best to look up architectural styles like Palladianism or International Style. It will also be good for biographies of individual architects. Individual entries are written by scholars in the field and typically include an extensive bibliography of relevant resources.


Reference Universe

Indexes the library's ebook and print reference works such as dictionaries, handbooks, encyclopedias.




Chinook is the catalog for books and other materials owned by the CU Libraries.


Search for your style such as <Gothic Revival> or <Baroque Architecture>


You can also construct searches with period and country like <architecture japan 20th century>


Articles are often where the theoretical aspects of a style might be argued, or where you could find example buildings of that type, depending on whether you look at scholarly or popular articles. Use Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals to search for both, limit to peer reviewed for the most academic articles.

Go on to Finding Context >>


Your Assignment

For each of your fact sheets, you'll need to find out about the context of the architecture.

Finding Contextual Information

The first place to look for this context is in the books and articles on that are on or include your building or style. However, they may not contain all the contexutal information you'll need, the following are additional resources to investigate these contexts

Cultural Context

Use Oxford Art Online to find out the basic of your architect or style, may contain information about the general context in which they worked or that the style existed


Timeline of Art History, with thematic essays and by placing events on the timeline, a great way to find the context of your paradigm. You can research parallel art movements, and find out other events going on at the same time.


Gale Virtual Reference Library use this resource to search through several online encyclopedias for basic informatio


NOAA's page has data on the climate of various US cities


The CU library maintains a research guide with many resources on investigating climate

Economic Context

Try these encyclopedias, or search Chinook for books on the economic period.


The Oxford encyclopedia of economic history


Gale encyclopedia of U.S. economic history

Siting and Relationship to the Outdoors

Maps and aerial photos are a good way to understand a building's siting


Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals

Finding Siting Info: The advanced search page in Avery Index includes physical description check boxes for plans, elevations, maps, aerial photos and more.


USGS Topographic maps from 1902-current 

Good overview of the change in the city over time. Click on “map locator and downloader.” Then for example, search for Boulder, CO. Click on the red pin. You’ll get a list of topographic maps for Boulder with different dates. You can download any of these for free, just click download.


For more maps you can go to the Earth Sciences & Map Library
Katie Lage, Map Librarian, maplib@colorado.edu
Benson Earth Sciences building, lower floor of the library


Go on to Finding Images >>



Finding Images

You're required to find an image of your building. You can use the library's databases to find better images.


Use our How do I Find Images Guide for many more image resources.


Don't forgot Journal Articles and Books, the library provides scanners!


Consult with the VRC for more image help.

Image Databases


Over one million images of visual and material culture, covering all geographic areas and historical periods. ARTstor is the best resource for finding high-quality images of architecture. It often includes plans and multiple views.


CU Digital Library

Images digitized by the University Library and Visual Resources centers. The architecture and planning collection contains 100,000 images.


AP Images

Provides access to Associated Press photos. Particularly useful for images of architecture, public spaces, archaeological sites, etc. Limit by date to close in on images from your time period.


Google Image Search

Use advanced search options to limit to large size image.



A place to find crowd-sourced images. Great for buildings especially recent contemporary architecture or tourist attractions.


Creative Commons

From here you can search many different online image resources (such as Flickr) for pictures you can freely use, change, or re-mix.


Go on to Citing >>


Cite your Sources!

For this course you're required to use Chicago Author-Date style. Remember to cite not only everytime you quote a source, but also whenever you use another scholar's idea, even if in your own words.

Formatting Citations

You can use the OWL online guide to find clear guidlines on using Chicago Style.


The library has access to the official Online Chicago Manual.

Automate your Bibliography

There are several programs available that allow you to save citations you find on the web and automaticaly generate bibliographies. Using them at the outset of your research means you won't have to go back. These are huge time savers!
Citation Managers


A web-based citation management tool that allows you to save citations and retrieve them later using "Find it at CU" buttons. Citations from most databases can be easily exported directly to RefWorks. It also creates and formats bibliographies automatically using the citations you store in it.



A Firefox plugin that easily captures citations from library catalogs and article databases. Integrates with Microsoft Word and OpenOffice to generate bibliographies, footnotes, and in-text citations.



Stand alone software that allows you to organize your citations, add pdf's, and annotate. Integrates with word processing software.