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*Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies: Primary Sources

Evaluating Primary-Source Sites

Many libraries and organizations are making digital materials available online.

To find these collections, use a search string with terms relevant to your topic in Google or another search engine. For example:

digital collection library site:edu "black power"

You can also try the same search limiting to site:org rather than site:edu BUT:

Be careful!

EDU = educational institution
ORG = organization, which can mean almost ANY kind of noncorporate organization. If you aren't familiar with the organization, do some research on it! Who are they? What do they promote? Are they reliable?

* * * * * *

Questions to ask when you are assessing online primary-source collections:

  • Who is the author or creator of the page/site? Is there an institution involved? What is the name of the institution?
  • What are the credentials of the author or institution (what qualifies the author or institution to present these sources objectively? Do they represent a university? A library? An individual?)
  • Who sponsors the site? Is there information about funding?

Use Google, Wikipedia, & other sources to research the authors, organizations, or institutions responsible for the page and  its funding.

Don't just trust the About page!

  • What is the purpose of the site - To inform? To entertain? To sell you something? To argue for a certain point of view?
  • Who is the intended audience?
  • Are the sources cited? Where did the author(s) get the information?
  • Can the information on the page be verified with other sources? 
  • How current is the information? How recently has the website been updated?**
    (**This question may be less important for historians looking for historical primary sources.

GSU Archives

The Women's Collection is located in GSU's Special Collections & Archives on the 8th floor of Library South, including the following major collections:

Related collections in GSU's Special Collections and Archives include:

See also Special Collections & Archives' research guides (scroll down to "Special Collections and Archives) for more detailed information about their holdings.

For more information, contact Morna Gerrard, Women's Collection Archivist.

Looking for Statistics/Data?

logo, Research Data Services, Fall 2018

The Library's Research Data Services team can help you find and use statistics and data for your research projects!

You can meet with a RDS team member during their drop-in hours (held in the Library's CURVE space on Library South 2) or by scheduling an appointment. RDS also offers workshops on various aspects of data searching, analysis, and visualization.

For more information about team members, areas of expertise, and scheduling, see the Research Data Services guide (or click on the "Research Data Services" tab above).

Searching for Digital Collections

Many libraries and organizations are making digital materials available online.

To find these collections, use this search string in Google or another search engine, in addition to keywords relevant to your topic, for example:

digital collection library site:.edu "sex education" 

You can also try the same search limiting to site:org rather than site:edu BUT:

Be careful!

EDU = educational institution
ORG = organization, which can mean almost ANY kind of noncorporate organization. If you aren't familiar with the organization, do some research on it! Who are they? What do they promote? Are they reliable?

In this era of "fake news," don't just trust the information you see on a website's "About Us" tab or page.
Google the organization and learn more about them
from other sources

Databases Available @ GSU

You will need to log in with your Campus ID and password to use these databases off campus. 

We have many more databases which include primary sources! See the Primary Sources: History guide for more information.

Selected Freely Available Digital Collections