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HIS311 Roman Civilization Research Guide

Guide to finding contextual information and primary sources about Roman history from 800 BC - AD 476

Researching Roman Civilization

Since conducting research can often seem a bit like trying to get a sip of water from a fire hydrant, this guide is available to help jump start your research by providing selected resources in which to search.

May you enjoy the adventure of researching this intriguing time in history!

(Image from:

Beyond "History"

Heads Up:

As you search for appropriate information sources, you will not only look in the subject area of "history", but also in some of the following areas within the context of Roman civilization:

  • Archaeology
  • Arts & Architecture
  • Intellectual Life
  • Literature
  • Politics & Government
  • Religious Life
  • Science & Technology
  • Social Life

(Image from: ArtSTOR)

Looking for ideas about how to conduct research?

1.  Analyze your information need

  • Write a question or statement about your chosen topic
  • Identify key words and phrases that describe your topic
  • Determine:
    • The level of coverage and depth of the information needed
    • The type of information needed
    • How much information you need
    • The currency of the information needed
    • How soon you need the information
    • What disciplines or groups would be researching and writing about your topic

2.  Select the best information sources for your

  • Books (including eBooks, dictionaries, encyclopedias, etc.)    
  • Articles from journals, magazines, or newspapers
  • Primary sources
  • Videos, audios
  • Images
  • Websites

3.  Select the appropriate resource
     in which to search

  • Click on the Reference tab to search for dictionaries, encyclopedias, etc.
  • Click on the Books & eBooks tab to search for books, eBooks, videos, & audios
  • Click on the Articles tab to search for journal and newspaper articles
  • Click on the Primary Sources tab to search for primary information sources
  • Click on Media to search for images or streaming video/audio to enhance your project

4.  Conduct effective, efficient searches using "smart searching"

5.  Determine the relevance and reliability of the sources located

6.  Develop a working bibliography/reference list 
     (RefWorks can help with this!)

7.  Physically locate the desired material 
     (Sometimes this may mean requesting from another library)

8.  Read and think critically about your sources

9.  Write/develop an effective research paper/project/presentation

10.  Correctly cite the sources you used
       (e.g. using Turabian citation style) 
       (RefWorks can help with this too!)