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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Poetry and Short Stories: Reviews and Criticism: Intro to Research Skills

LEARN to Use the Library

The LEARN to Use the Library page, maintained by Reference, Research, and Scholarly Services, hosts a number of videos and tutorials that explain how to find materials and navigate the Library's many resources. Learn how to find specific articles and books, how to cite your sources, and more.

Peer Review Guide

Peer-reviewed sources are an excellent source for research. If you'd like to learn more, please see our Peer Review guide, which explains why peer review is important and where you can find peer-reviewed articles.

Introduction to the Library and Research Skills

This section provides information on basic library research skills.  It answers questions such as:

  • How do I search with multiple keywords?
  • How do I format the citations for my paper?
  • What is a 'peer review" article?
  • Why can't I always use Google and Wikipedia?

If you have any questions or need more help, contact English and Digital Humanities Librarian Harriett Green at green19 [at], call 217-333-4942, or visit her office in 200 South Main Library.

Terms to Know

These are some basic terms that will help to distinguish between the various types of resources made available by the Library.

Full-Text: these resources contain the complete texts of documents (such as journal articles).


Bibliography: these resource contain citations for documents (as opposed to documents in full text). You will often be able to click the Discover Full-Text button in resources like this at UIUC, but you may have to find a print copy in the catalog or use Interlibrary Loan.


Primary Source and Secondary Source: a primary source is a subject of direct study, and a secondary source is scholarly work on a primary source.

Examples: the novel Jane Eyre is a primary source, but journal articles and books discussing Jane Eyre are secondary sources.


Reference Source: reference sources are more introductory in nature than secondary scholarship, but may cite useful secondary sources.