UCB Libraries

Resources for PSCI 2106:
Introduction to Public Policy Analysis

For help doing recording your search terms and for tips on searching, check out the search worksheet.

  • Finding Books
  • Finding Articles
  • Congress
  • Implementing the Laws
  • Citing Resources
  • Finding Additional Help

+ Getting Started
The library catalog, Chinook, is the best place to get started searching for books. These sections will provide examples on how to find books and tips for searching the catalog.

You will find in Chinook a number of reference sources that will provide assistance in starting your research. They can give you a broad overview of the topic and assistance on finding additional more in-depth sources.

Reference Resources

ABC-CLIO e-Book Collection CU
The ABC-Clio eBook Collection includes the online full text of hundreds of reference books on many subjects, including (but not limited to) U.S. and world history, politics, and government. Browse by subject or title, or search the full text of all titles at once.

Reference Universe CU
Reference Universe is a database that contains the table of contents and indexes of reference books. You can use this database to find titles that we have electronically and in print.

+ Searching for Books, Two Examples
Basic Keyword Search

  1. Go to Chinook and type in the search terms nuclear energy policy united states.
  2. You can use the links to the left and narrow down the list of resources. For example, if you only want books, not journals, click on Books only.
  3. This is still a large result set, so let's click on Subject as well.
  4. This gives us a nice set of results, but that first title looks the most interesting. So click on National energy policy : the future of nuclear and coal power in the United States : hearing before the Subcommittee on Energy and Power of the Committee on Commerce, House of Representatives, One Hundred Sixth Congress, second session, June 8, 2000. This record can lead us to other relevant titles. If you scroll down to "Subject" you will see there are descriptions of what this book is about. To find more relevant books (similar to this one), click on Nuclear energy -- Government policy -- United States .
  5. Now let's go get those books. These titles are in a variety of places. To get a link to the map of the location, click on the title, click the "Chinook classic" icon to the left, and finally click on the location in this new display. This will take you to a map which showing the material's location.
Advanced Keyword Search

  1. Go to Chinook and click on Advanced Keyword Search.
  2. In the first box, change the drop down to "Subject" and type policy. In the second box, change the drop-down to "Subject" and type United States. Finally in the third box, change the drop-down to "Subject" and type environment*. You could also type all these terms in the first box with an AND between them.
    Tips: The * replaces up to 5 characters and choosing subject gets you a more refined, focused set of results.
  3. This will give you a lot of results, so let's click on Environmental Policy and Politics.
  4. In the record you have a number of options. You can click on a subject heading, such as Environmental Policy -- United States or click on the Show Similar Items box at the top of the record. Below you will get more details on both.
    • Subject Headings: In advanced keyword, not only can you search by subject heading, but you can also browse the subject headings around the one listed in this record. For example, if you click on Environmental Policy -- United States you will see that you can see 1240 books on this topic or focus in on 7 on Environmental Policy -- United States -- Evaluation.
    • Show Similar Items: This button takes the first three subject headings and searches the catalog for other titles with these topics. Generally, this results in a set of books that will be dealing with topics similar to the record you start with.
  5. Finding the books: In this version of the catalog, all the location codes are hyperlinked to maps of where those materials are located in the libraries.
+ Other Search Suggestions for Chinook
There are a number of terms to try when searching Chinook, but here are some suggestions:

  • policy evaluation energy
    This will find books on evaluating energy policy.
  • congress policy nuclear
    This will help you find out what the US Congress has said about nuclear policy.
  • United States Middle East energy policy
    Think in broad terms. If you are interested in oil policy and the Middle East (or even a particular country, such as Saudi Arabia), this broader search (energy instead of oil) will get you more results.
  • United States monetary policy
    Don't forget those facets on the side of the screen. On the right-hand side you can use the "Refine by Tag" box to focus your search in further.
+ Finding Books not at CU
There are two major library catalogs to search for materials not available at CU.


Prospector is a library catalog of 26 libraries in Colorado and Wyoming. CU students, staff and faculty can request materials not held by CU (or currently checked out) through Prospector. To do this, click on the "Request this item" or "Request it" link and type in your identikey and password (these are the same username and password you use to login to CUConnect and CULearn). The materials requested through this database generally (if they are available at another library) take 3-5 business days to arrive.

WorldCat CU

WorldCat is a database of library resources from across the world. Requesting materials through this database is an ILL request. To learn more about ILL, check out their web page.
+ Finding Articles at CU

Non-Scholarly Sources

CIAO: Colombia International Affairs Online CU
Comprehensive online source for theory and research in international affairs. Publishes a wide range of scholarship that includes working/policy papers from university research institutes, occasional papers series from NGOs, foundation-funded research projects, proceedings from conferences, books, journals and policy briefs.

CQ Press Electronic Library CU
This database contains a variety of content on the work of Congress that might be useful. You can search across all the content from the search box on the main page or go into a particular area and search just that content. (For more details, check out the Congress tab.)

Scholarly Articles

This database is an interdisciplinary index of journals, books and publications that cover global public policy and social issues including health, finance, economics, education, technology, and the environment for the U.S. and abroad.
1. This database is an index, which means that you will need to use "Find it at CU" to find a majority of the materials indexed.
2. When you find an article that covers the topics you are interested in use the "Descriptors" to focus in on other articles in this database on those topics.

This database provides full-text access to articles from scholarly journals in history, economics, political science, demography, mathematics and other fields in the humanities and social sciences.
1. This database does NOT have current access to a majority of the journals in JSTOR. This means if your topic is a current event, this database will not work out as well.
2. The default is to search the full text of the articles. If you are getting to many results go to advanced search and search only the abstract and/or title.

Web of Science CU
An interdisciplinary index that provides bibliographic citations for high-impact journals in the disciplines of science, social sciences, and arts and humanities.
1. This is an abstract database, which means it has NO full text. To find full text of the article, click "Find it at CU."
2. The citation field in this database can help you determine the impact of a particular article. If an article has been out for 10 years and no one has cited it then it has little impact.
3. Don't forget to use those facets on the side to refine by subject, article type and/or year.

Looking for more? Check out Find Articles and More

This is the main site to use to find all the databases available at CU. There are a few categories that you may be most interested in:

Want to access these databases from off-campus? Check out the off-campus guide for help.

+ Getting Articles from PASCAL
Many of our journals have been sent off site to a location called PASCAL. If you want a copy of an article from one of these journals there are two options.

Option 1: Get a Copy Electronically
  1. Get your citation. You may have a citation to the article in a bibliography or maybe you found it using a database, either way will work.
  2. Go to Chinook and type in the Journal title (if you are looking at a bibliographic citation this is generally the title in italics).
  3. In this record you will see a "Request a PDF (UCB only)" note in the box with all the years covered information. Click on that link.
  4. It will ask if you have checked to see if we have a copy electronically, if you have then click the yes button. If not, choose no and follow those steps. (The following steps will be for the folks who choose yes.)
  5. You will need to login to ILLiad, the very first time you do this it will ask a series of question, you only need to fill that form out once.
  6. Once in ILLiad, choose "Electronically Delivered Articles" under New Requests.
  7. Type in all the citation information you can here. The more you include the better, but don't worry if you can't fill in all the fields. Only the ones with the asterisks are required.
  8. Click "Submit Request" at the bottom.
  9. You can now logout of ILLiad, you will get an email when your article has been scanned.
  10. There will be a link in your email to ILLiad, after you login click on "Electronically Received Articles" under "View."
  11. The process of scanning in the article should only take 1 business day.
Option 2: Get the Journal at the Library

  1. Get your citation. You may have a citation to the article in a bibliography or maybe you found it using a database, either way will work.
  2. Go to Chinook and type in the Journal title (if you are looking at a bibliographic citation this is generally the title in italics).
  3. Choose the record with title that does not have [electronic resource] next to it.
  4. At the top of the page click on the "REQUEST IT!" button.
  5. Login using your identikey and password and choose a pickup location.
  6. Choose the volume you want. (At this time you can only choose one volume at a time, if you need to recall a large set of volumes, please contact Circulation for assistance.)
  7. Hit the "Request Selected Item" button.
  8. You will get an email when your volume arrives, which should be within 1 business day.
The power of the Congress to implement laws is very clear, but they also have oversight responsibilities to make sure those laws are enforced. Therefore, Congress can be a fruitful source for finding information on government policy. This section will outline some of the resources on Congress and how you can use them in your research.
+ CQ Press Electronic Library

CQ Press Electronic Library
CU contains a variety of content on the work of Congress that might be useful. You can search across all the content from the search box on the main page or go into a particular area and search just that content.
  • CQ Weekly CU
    This is a weekly publication outlining the major issues in Congress. The articles are short, but they give a quick snapshot of an issue. You can also find the weekly votes in this publication.
  • CQ Researcher CU
    This publication focuses on one particular issue and has provides an overview, pro-con arguments, outlook, chronology, and bibliography. While this is not a peer-reviewed source, it is a great starting point for your research.
  • Congress and the Nation CU
    This reference source provides either by topic or date the ability to determine the actions taken by Congress. The work of Congress is outlined from 1945-2008.
+ ProQuest Congressional

ProQuest Congressional CU contains the full-text of congressional work. This includes the hearings, committee reports, debates, laws, and CRS reports.
  • Hearings CU
    Congressional Hearings are held on topics coming up for legislation or when the committee is exercising its oversight responsibilities. Generally you will find representatives from the government agencies that will/are implementing the law and groups representing issues on either side of the debate.
  • Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports CU
    These are short, neutral reports on legislative initiatives and other topics written at the request of Congress.
  • Public Laws CU
+ Video on Finding Hearings
Congress conducts hearings on a wide variety of topics to meet their legislative and oversight responsibilities. The video below demonstrates how to find these resources using ProQuest Congressional CU. (Note: The database changed names since this video was created, but the content is the same.)

To view this in full screen mode, click the far right bottom corner (which has a little yellow screen icon).
Unable to display content. Adobe Flash is required.

Many of the laws passed by Congress then need to be implemented by the Executive branch agencies. The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is the codification of the general and permanent rules published in the Federal Register by the departments and agencies of the Federal Government.

Regulations.gov provides access to the Federal Register notices as well as all the public comment on the proposed rule. The video below demonstrates how you can use this web site.


If you want this to fill the screen hit the little yellow icon on the bottom right corner.

How to Cite a Source
This is a collection of guides to various styles (APA, MLA, Turabian, etc.) and resources for using citation tools, such as RefWorks.

RefWorks CU
RefWorks is a citation manager that will make all your citing so much easier. Most of the databases mentioned on these pages have links to export citations into RefWorks. You can use this tool to gather all your citations and then create a bibliography when you have finished your paper. You can even directly export citations into RefWorks from Chinook!
These are just a few other guides you might find helpful:

Connecting to Databases from Off-Campus
This is a web page describing the steps you will need to take to get your home computer to let you into the databases from off-campus.

Research and Subject Guides Database
This is a collection of all the guides (over 500) created on a variety of topics from declassified documents to history to the guide you are looking at right now.

Foreign Information by Country
There is a guide here to resources on every country on the world. The resources range from quick profiles, to article databases, and much more.

Still need help?
There are a number of ways to receive additional assistance:
1. Stop by the Research Desk on the second floor, check the web site for hours.
2. During those same hours, ask us on chat.

3. Or send an email to set up an individual appointment to jennifer.gerke@colorado.edu.