UCB Libraries


Subject Guide for Philosophy

  • Introduction
  • Keywords
  • Books
  • Articles
  • Writing & Citing
  • Off-campus

Philosophy is a word that is much abused and overused in everyday speech. Below are tools for research in the academic discipline of philosophy. Included here are tools for searching in some related fields that may be of great value to philosophers, such as religion and classical history.




New Philosophy Books at CU

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You can also:

Suggest a title for purchase

Request a library instruction session

Developing Keywords
| Combining Keywords


Developing Keywords


Before you start to research a topic, you need to develop keywords that represent your research interest, question, or inquiry.


Keywords are significant words (usually nouns or noun phrases) which can be used as search terms in online catalogs or databases. Keywords will determine the quantity and relevance of results you retrieve when searching.


Every database has its own set of keywords. For successful searching, try to make sure your keywords match those of the database.

Try searching for names as authors, subjects, and keywords to get the broadest selection of materials.

Try these keywords in Chinook. They will be most effective in a SUBJECT search. Each had myriad sub-headings that you can use to narrow your search.


Combining Keywords



AND: "Gender roles" AND Russia (must find both terms)
OR: Male OR masculinity (must find one of the terms)
NOT: fiction NOT poetry (must find first term NOT second term)


Phrases: “Yellow Wall Paper” (must
Synonyms: (mother or motherhood) AND "Yellow Wall Paper"
Wildcards: feminis* will find feminism or feminist

You may use the UCB Search Strategy/ Keyword Worksheetto develop your own topic.

For deatails on combining keywords for the best results view the

How Do I Use Keywords

Prospector | Interlibrary Loan


Search Chinook - http://libraries.colorado.edu/

Chinook is the catalog for materials owned by the CU Libraries. You can do a title search for a specific book, or a keyword search if you are looking for books on a particular topic. You can also use MyChinook to manage your library account (including renewals, holds, recalls, saved searches, etc.)

Chinook Catalog

Tutorial: Chinook Keyword Search

How do I Choose Keywords for my search


Search Prospector - http://prospector.coalliance.org/

ProspectorIf 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. CU students, staff and faculty can request materials through Prospector, and the items will generally be delivered to Norlin within a few business days.


Request through Interlibrary Loan (ILL) - http://ucblibraries.colorado.edu/ill/

If the item you are looking for is not in Chinook or Prospector, you can request it through Interlibrary Loan (ILL). Generally, an ILL request will take longer to be delivered than material requested through Prospector.

Articles By Topic | Choosing a Database | Articles From a Citation


Articles by Topic

In order to find articles about a particular topic, you will use a library database. UCB Libraries provides access to numerous databases. They are available on the Find Articles and More Page.


WAIT! Are you connecting from off-campus?

Tutorial: VPN

Choosing a Database

Fortunately, research in philosophy is concentrated into a relatively small number of the most relevant databases, although research on topics in philosophy may be found in a large number of related databases.



REMEMBER! We are here to help, so please ASK US if you need suggestions. See the contact information in the left sidebar to contact Jennifer Knievel, the philosophy librarian at CU.


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CU Philosopher's Index
The primary source for all Philosophy related research. Provides indexing and abstracts from books and journals of philosophy and related fields. It covers the areas of ethics, aesthetics, social philosophy, political philosophy, epistemology, and metaphysic logic as well as material on the philosophy of law, religion, science, history, education, and language.


CU Past Masters
Past Masters is an online collection of full texts of philosophical figures, including published and unpublished works, articles and essays, and correspondence. The database includes cohesive collections of excellent editions, both in the original language and the English translation. Collections include, among others, Anselm, Aquinas, Aristotle, Berkeley, Boyle, Descartes, Hobbes, Hume, Kant, Locke, Sidgwick, Plato, and Wittgenstein.


Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
A dynamic reference work and is a publishing project of the Metaphysics Research Lab at the Center for the Study of Language and Information (CSLI) at Stanford University.


CU PhilPapers
PhilPapers is a directory of online philosophical articles and books by academic philosophers. Included are articles from journals in many areas of philosophy, as well as archives and personal pages. Some articles come directly from users, who can provide links or upload copies. Some features require that you sign in first.


CU Arts and Humanities Citation Index via Web of Science
Tracks where articles have been cited after their publication.
Coverage : 1980 to the present.


CU ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials
Collection of major religious and theology journals selected by religion scholars in the United States. Full text journals representing all major religious faiths, denominations and language groups are included. As with the ATLA Religion Database, coverage dates back to 1949.


CU Catholic Periodical and Literature Index

The Catholic Periodical and Literature Index Online covers all aspects of the Catholic faith and lifestyle, and includes over 419,000 index citations of articles and reviews published in Roman Catholic periodicals, Papal documents, church promulgations, and books about the Catholic faith that are authored by Catholics and/or produced by Catholic publishers.


CU Humanities Abstracts/Full Text
Abstracts and some full text covering diverse subject areas of the humanities. Covers a few philosophy journals not covered in Philosopher's Index. Coverage: Abstracts from 1985 to the present; full text from 1995 to the present.


Provides image and full-text online access to back issues of selected scholarly journals in philosophy and other fields of the humanities and social sciences. Consult the online tables of contents for holdings, as coverage varies for each title.


CU L'Annee Philologique
In order for this database to function properly, you must be using Internet Explorer.
An international annual index to research on all aspects of greco-roman antiquity, from prehistory to 800 AD. Indexes books, journal articles, dissertations, and conference proceedings covering a broad range of classical subjects, including language, literature, archaeology, history, law, philosophy, science, and technology.


CU Periodicals Archive Online

Periodicals Archive Online (PAO) is an online archive of digitized journals in many subjects.  It provides researchers with access to more than 200 years of scholarship for some titles


CU Periodicals Index Online

Periodicals Index Online is a database of millions of article citations from over 4,500 periodicals in published in the arts, humanities and social sciences across more than 300 years.


CU Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Features over 2000 original articles from over 1300 leading international experts across the discipline of philosophy.

If you cannot decide which database to use, contact us via the ASK US page.


Or search numerous guides leading to valuable resources (databases, print, online directories and more): Research and Subject Guides



Articles from a Citation

If you have a specific article you need or you are tracking works from a bibliography, you will use:


Find it @ CU Article Finder
Complete this form to find the article in electronic or print.

Tutorial: Find it @ CU Article Finder

OR use the Chinoook Journals/ Serials Title search. Be sure to look for the journal/ magazine title NOT the article title. Then follow the links to the correct volume, issue, year, page number.

Tutorial: Chinook Periodical Title

Citation Styles
| RefWorks | Writing


Citation Styles


The following guides provide samples of common citation formats. Consult Reference Desk personnel for additional information.

APA Style (PDF document)


MLA Style (PDF document)


Turabian: a form of Chicago Style (PDF document)

You may also find print guides in the library:



Turabian (Chicago)


A personal online database and bibliography creator that allows users to create a personal database online, import references automatically from multiple databases, organize references, and quickly format bibliographies and manuscripts. You will need to create a login and password. Provided by the University of Colorado Boulder Libraries.


How do I use RefWorks?



University of Colorado PWR Writing Center
This site details services provided by the Program for Writing and Rhetoric at UC Boulder. The page also details information about the writing center in Norlin Library E156. You may make an appointment online.

OWL of Purdue University
Online Writing Center of Purdue University is an excellent site full of writing and research tips.

Off-campus Access to Library Databases

If you want to access most of the resources I've recommended in this course guide, you need to be either:

a) on campus (in a lab, in the library, using the campus-provided wireless, etc.)

b) off campus, but connected to the campus network

For option B, you'll need to visit the Libraries' webpage for instructions on how to access library resources from off-campus. It will tell you how to download the free software you'll need from ITS.


If you have questions about the installation of the VPN software, contact ITS at (303) 735-HELP.