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ANTH 1103: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology - Fall 2022


To get started today, log into a classroom computer or your own personal laptop, tablet, etc. and open the MRU Library website

How to find the ANTH 1103 course guide:

  1. Go to the library home page (
  2. Click on "Research Support" (on the menu bar)
  3. Click "Subject Guides & Specialists"
  4. Look for Anthropology and click "Guide"
  5. Look for "courses" (on the menu) bar and select "ANTH 1103: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology - Perez-Rivera"

Let's Get Started:

  1. Two Questions in Google Jamboard (respond to one or both questions)
    • What would you like to learn or discuss in today's class? 
    • What would you like to know about the library, its tools or its services?


  1. What information do I need to know for this assignment?
  2. What are non-academic sources?
  3. How do I find non-academic sources?
  4. How do I create Chicago Style references for less common sources?
  5. Class time to work on assignment and receive individual help

Selected Assignment Details

  1. Find two (2) non-academic sources
  2. Two (2) themes from course materials
  3. Four (4) references (two non-academic, two academic) in Chicago Style. 

Strengths: short, contains background information on a topic, normally a great starting point when you are just learning about a topic
Weaknesses: too short, print encyclopedias are out of date quickly, Wikipedia has reliability issues

Books and Book Chapters
Strengths: Provides an in-depth investigation into a topic
Weaknesses: too long, sometimes hard to tell whether it is scholarly

Scholarly Journal Articles
Strengths: often based on research findings or extensive review, written by experts, reviewed by experts, provides evidence
Weaknesses: Sometimes written using discipline-specific language or terminology, hard to understand,

Media Sources (news, online magazine articles)
Strengths: Good for current information
Weaknesses: Sometimes biased, sometimes written to entertain, often not written by experts, often not reviewed by experts

Websites & Social Media
Strengths: Highly accessible, includes government info
Weaknesses: It is hard to assess credibility and reliability...anyone can post online or create a website

Lectures, Ted Talks, Interviews, Recordings, Testimony
Strengths: Primary, first-hand accounts
Weaknesses: It is hard to assess credibility and reliability...single perspective relying on the accuracy of memory.

Activity: Differences between scholarly and non-scholarly sources.

Sort the characteristics into either scholarly or non-scholarly.  If unsure, leave it in the middle.

Scholarly Articles

  • Often referred to as academic, peer-reviewed, or refereed 
  • Written by experts in a particular field
  • Keep others interested in that field up to date on the most recent research and findings. 

What is peer-review?

  • When a source has been peer-reviewed it has undergone the review and scrutiny of a review board of colleagues in the author's field.  They evaluate this source as part of the body of research for a particular discipline and make recommendations regarding its publication in a journal, revisions prior to publication, or, in some cases, reject its publication.

General Characteristics

  1. Author: Expert in the field
  2. Review: Reviewed by other experts (peers)
  3. Audience / Language: Written for scholars and students; uses academic language
  4. Content: Original research and criticism; uses previous research literature for background
  5. Citations: Always


Quality refers to how trustworthy credible, and reputable your source is.

  • Information creations are valued differently depending on the context and purpose for which they are created
  • Audience matters. Certain things are created for certain purposes and it doesn't really make one format of information better than another. It is up to us to determine what information process best fits our information need.
  • In your own creation process, understand that your choices in what type of information you use, impacts the purpose for which the information product you create will be used and the message it conveys. 
  1. Purpose: Consider the purpose of the source.  Why did the authors write it and how do you know that?
    • Is it fact or opinion?  Is there bias?  (Does the source favour one idea over another in an unfair way?)
    • Consider the audience of the source.  Who did the authors write it for and how do you know that?
  2. Authority: Consider who wrote the source and who is responsible for the source.  Are the authors experts on the topic and how do you know that?  Who is responsible for this information - a company, a government, a university, personal?  How do you know that?
  3. Currency: Consider when the source was published or written.  How recently was it written and how do you know that?
  4. Reliability: Consider the information from the source.  Does your source provide details about where they got their information - such as references?
  5. Relevance: What does it have to do with my topic?

Visual for Quality and Relevence

What are the best tools for the information that I need?

Multidisciplinary Search Tools

  • These search multiple disciplines.  Not as strong for finding discipline-specific topics (ie.  stress - psychology or stress - engineering)
  • Examples include: MRU LibrarySearch, Academic Search Complete, Google Scholar

Subject Specific Search Tools

  • These tools are focused on a specific discipline, such as psychology, economics, biology, etc.  Use the subject guides to help choose a subject specific search tool
  • Examples include:  Anthropology Plus

Background / Reference Search Tools (Use the subject guides to help identify these)

  • Useful for finding background information on your topic, finding key people, understanding key concepts and locating other readings.  Includes encyclopedias, handbooks, dictionaries, etc.

Type of Source Tools (Use the subject guides to help identify these)

  • Useful for finding background information by type of resource.  This would include tools for searching newspapers, streaming media, primary sources, etc.

General Searching Tips:

Less is More: Start with one or two words and then add one additional term at a time

  • human migration
  • migration theories
  • migration theories North America

Phrase searching: Use "quotation marks" around key ideas made up of multiple words

  • "Venus figurines""
  • very useful when you have a specific phrase containing common words

Use limits: These refine (narrow) your search using different restrictions

  • Date (classic resources are great, but we want to see active scholarship)
  • Peer-reviewed (for articles)

Boolean:  OR / AND / NOT

  • use OR for spelling (archaeology OR archeology) and words with similar meanings to reduce your # of searches
  • use AND to combine words and phrases (this is usually the default when searching)
  • use NOT to exclude a word or phrase (be careful when eliminating something from a search - it's easy to exclude too much)

Truncation: Use an asterisk * to find different endings to your keywords

  • ceremon* = ceremony, ceremonies, ceremonial
  • environ* = environment, environmental, environmentalists

Using LibrarySearch

Things to remember when using LibrarySearch:

  1. Sign in to save searches, items, and to request materials.

  2. Use the pin icon to save books and articles. 

  3. Use the filters on the right. Common filters are Availability, Resource Type, Peer-Review and Date.

  4. Some items won't be available. You can request unavailable items using interlibrary loan.

  5. When viewing an item record, scroll down to the Get It or Full-Text section to get the item.

Additional LibrarySearch Features

  1. Description / Subject Headings
  2. Access Options (physical location, online access)
  3. Tools (Cite-It, Permalink)

Finding Non-Academic Sources

  1. LibrarySearch
    • Newspaper Search
  2. Google
    • News
    • Videos
  3. Databases
    • Streaming Video
    • Newspapers
      • New York Times
      • Canadian Business and Current Affairs
        • Filter by Type

Chicago Manual of Style Sources


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