Welcome to this Program Guide.
Purpose: Help CUW graduate students in M.Ed. Special Education program.
Students will learn basic and advanced library searching skills necessary for success.
Help Available: If you need help finding resources, please feel free to contact librarians at Ask a Librarian or on the Library Tab in the CUW Portal (phone, email, chat)
How to Use: Start from the top and read all the tabs in order. Once you have completed the tutorial, return to specific tabs as needed.
If you have never used CUW Library before there are a few resources and procedures to learn.
1. Start Here: CUW Library Getting Started Guide
2. For more information about finding and accessing library materials:
Access your Library Account (VIDEO)
- Use books, ebooks, and reference books to learn about your research topic, identify important researchers, locate keywords for searching, and narrow your topic.
- Review our Literature Searching Tutorial for information on the types of resources recommended.
- Start with Subject Specific databases. See the Databases tab.
- Search Primo for access to journals specific to Primo.
- Use Interlibrary Loan to request items from other libraries. Graduate students utilize this service often.
- If you need more guidance, consider a research consultation with a CUW Librarian. We can even do video conferences with online students.
This video covers the basics of library databases.
This video covers which journal articles in databases you can use.
More Databases: Databases A-Z List
Basics of searching: Using Databases Help Guide
Education Database (ProQuest) Literature and articles on primary, secondary and higher education as well as special education, home schooling and adult education.
Education Source (EBSCOhost) This database provides scholarly research for education students, professionals, and policy makers. It covers all levels of education — from early childhood to higher education — as well as all educational specialties such as multilingual education, health education, and testing. Content includes: full text and indexing for journals, books and monographs, conference papers, and book reviews.
Educational Administration Abstracts (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) Includes bibliographic records covering areas related to educational administration, including educational leadership, educational management, educational research, and other areas of key relevance to the discipline.
ERIC (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) Provides citation and abstract information for educational scholarly journals and related documents from the Educational Resource Information Center and educational symposium. 1967-present.
Gale OneFile: Educators Reference Complete (Gale) This database seeks to provide full text for titles in the Eric database and covers multiple levels of education from preschool to college, and every educational specialty--such as technology, bilingual education, health education, and testing. It also provides insight on issues in administration, funding, and policy.
Professional Development Collection (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) High quality scholarly education journals and educational reports.
Children’s Core Collection (H.W. Wilson) (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) Fiction and nonfiction works, story collections, picture books and magazines recommended for readers in preschool through sixth grade. Books cover a wide variety of topics, including social sciences, science, math and reading.
*use full-text filter for this database
Explora for Educators (Provided by Badgerlink) lesson plans, student tools, curriculum standards, and other professional development resources for educators.
Explora for Elementary Schools (Provided by Badgerlink) Content for elementary school students on arts and music, geography, language arts, math, science and health, and social studies.
Explora for Middle & High Schools (Provided by Badgerlink) Content for Middle and High School Students on a wide range of subjects including Arts and Literature, Current Issues, Geography, Science and Math, and History.
MAS Complete (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) High school magazines, full-text reference books, biographies, primary source documents, photos, maps & flags. 1975-present.
*use full-text filter for this database
Middle and Junior High Core Collection (H.W. Wilson) (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) This Collection is a selective list of fiction and non-fiction books recommended for grades 5 through 9, along with review sources and other professional aids.
*use full-text filter for this database
Middle Search Plus (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) Provides full text for popular middle school magazines, primary sources, images, maps, flags, biographies, and historical essays. All full text articles included in the database are assigned a reading level indicator (Lexiles).
Primary Search (EBSCOhost-provided by Badgerlink) Full-text popular magazines for elementary school research. Full text articles date as far back as 1990 and are assigned a reading level indicator (Lexiles).
Use these search techniques to locate Primary Research inside databases and PRIMO.
- Add the following row of keywords to your search: (methods AND results) OR methodology OR “case study” OR “this study” OR “a study”.
You will want to copy and paste this entire row of keywords into its own search box (see first example below).
IMPORTANT! From your list of results, you will still need to examine each article to see if it is primary research.
- Filter by Document Type: on the Advanced Search page choose Case Study under Document Type or Publication Type. In ProQuest Education Journals, it looks like this:
All of these results are generally primary research articles, but not all primary research is a case study, so you will likely be missing some primary research articles on your topic by searching this way.
- In ERIC database, you can choose “Reports – All” and/or “Reports – Research” under Publication Type.
WI DPI IEP Resources
Videos and tips for making IEPs
- Don’t be afraid to try “link to full text” or “Check for Full Text” options in databases. Items indexed in one database may be full-text in another.
- Try searching the full title in PRIMO. The item should appear on the first page of results if we have it.
- Try searching Google Scholar for the title. Look for a Full-Text @ CUW link.
- Use Inter-library Loan. Online students can request articles and individual chapters of books from other libraries delivered via email. Use this form to request items.
- Ask a Librarian for help. We have extra options we can try or recommend.
Looking for a dissertation or masters thesis? References from recently published dissertations can provide the latest research and research methods. Students are more and more sharing their dissertations online or are available through university online repositories.
However, remember that dissertation quality can vary significantly.
CUW Institutional Repository
Open Access Search Tools
Search Primo for books on your research topic. For more information: Finding Books
Trying to determine if an article is published in a peer- reviewed journal?
- Click on the journal title in the database record to open the journal’s page (you may have to click a more or show all link to see peer-reviewed status):
2. Check the journal’s website for a description of the
Find Journal Articles By Journal Title in Primo
- Open Primo Journal Title Search
- Search for the journal’s full title.
- Click on the journal’s title in the search results.
- Use the search box inside the journal to search for articles or browse articles by year, volume, or issue in a database.
- Don’t see the year? Request the article via inter-library loan.
Your instructor may ask you to upload a permanent link, or permalink to your references list.
For instructions on how to find permalinks visit:
Education subject databases providers:
Our Guide for academic writing: Writing With Sources
We recommend all graduate students use a citation manager like Zotero:
Guides for setting up and using Zotero
APA Citation Style Resources
Current law text with revisions
Topic Pages from the Dept of Education related to IDEA and SPED
Index of pages from WI Department of Instruction