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Christina Smith's picture

Sociology Librarian Tool Kit

-------------- Please do not edit this brief section------------

Attn: Sociology Librarians and other interested parties: In celebration of ANSS's 40th anniversary, the Sociology and Anthropology Discussion Groups are teaming up to create and update our Librarian Tool Kits for both subject areas.  Below, you will find the Sociology Librarian Tool Kit. This is a working document, and we want to crowd-source its creation. Please add resources and edit the document, either by directly editing it and noting the changes you made.  An Anthropology Librarian Tool Kit was created at the same time. A new Criminal Justice and Criminology Librarian Tool Kit was created in July 2013. 

Click here to find the Anthropology Librarian Tool Kit.

Click here to find the Criminal Justice and Criminology Librarian Tool Kit.

Note: For this draft, we would appreciate it if you would use editing conventions that help us track changes.

  • If you want to delete something, please use strikethrough rather than just deleting.
  • If you want to make a note about something, or add a comment, please use red text, AND [put your comment in square brackets like this to accommodate people who cannot see red] (or you can comment in the comments).
  • Please note in the "revision information" box what types of changes you made.


--------------Start editing below this line --------------------- Thanks!


A Quick List of Collection Development Tools and Practices for Sociology Librarians

Originally Compiled for Sociology by Stephen Fowlkes, 2007

Revised April 2012 by and Pauline Manaka, Christina Smith, Bonnie Crarey Ryan, and Miriam Rigby, and then posted to Connect for crowd-sourcing



I.  Best Practices in Networking to Enhance Presence with Department Liaison Work


Faculty Meetings: Make an effort to be invited; attend at least one each semester

Ask to be added to the department’s listserv; website, social media in all forms.

Ask to be included in research communication with graduate students

Participate in all welcoming services to new graduate students and new faculty

Send a limited number of e-mails:

  •  At the start of each semester/quarter:
  • (a) Reminders about instruction and Information literacy teaching sessions
  • (b) Book requests/book order process
  • (c) Availability for research consultations with students, etc.
  • (d) New web tools/ tutorials to guide their library research, and more
  • Announce whenever new databases or major reference tools are acquiree

Maintain Faculty Research/teaching-interest profiles/vitae

  • Solicit info from faculty
  • Find info on departmental Web Site bios
  • Do literature searches to identify previous publications, etc.

Know the Administrative Assistant(s) in the Sociology Dept.

Hold office hours in the department

Attend campus or departmental lectures, special events or symposia to help stay abreast of research interests and trends.

Be aware of course syllabi for the department's classes (Check out the "required readings" in course syllabi)

Be aware of new courses introduced to the department.

Sit in on classes in your department, if possible, after asking permission of the faculty member, of course. (Or better yet, be an Embedded Librarian in a class)

Offer to include a library tour for faculty/grad student candidates when they interview

Find out about new faculty arriving in the dept. and be sure and give them a library orientation tour.

Invite the dept. chair or library liaison to have coffee/lunch/cocktails regularly

Stay in touch with librarian-colleagues at similar institutions for ideas, suggestions, etc. (participation in ANSS, especially conference attendance, is great for this!!)


II. Collection Building Tools


Book Review Sources.

These items are listed in no order of importance.

  • Choice
  • Library Journal
  • Acta Sociologica
  • American Sociologist
  • American Journal of Sociology
  • British Journal of Sociology
  • Cahiers Internationaux de Sociologie
  • Canadian Journal of Sociology
  • Contemporary Sociology: A Journal of Reviews
  • European Sociological Review
  • International Sociology
  • Social Forces
  • Sociological Inquiry
  • The Sociological Review
  • Sociology: a Journal of the British Sociological Association
  • Qualitative Sociology Review (OA!)
  • Rural Sociology

Also,  Magazines for Libraries (LaGuardia, 2012)  lists many, many more


Major Publishers


Journal Selection Sources:

Magazines for libraries, 21st ed. LaGuardia, Cheryl, and William A. Katz., 2012

“Sociology & Social Work” chapter (pgs. 764-777) lists over 120 journals, each with full publication and feature information, as well as a descriptive annotation.

 ALA Guide to Sociology & Psychology Reference (ALA, 2011)

Sociology: A Guide to Reference and Information Sources, 3rd ed. (Stephen Aby, 2005)

            Lists 64 sociology journals with annotations.


ISI Journal Citation Reports

CSA Sociological Abstracts (Serials Title List) http://www.proquest.com/assets/downloads/titlelists/databases/titlelist_socabs.xls

American Sociological Association Publications - http://www.asanet.org/journals/journals.cfm


Reference Tools Selection Sources:

  • Sociology: A Guide to Reference and Information Sources,  3rd ed. (Stephen Aby, 2005) An annotated list of over 600 general social science and sociology reference sources, as well as a list of sources for 23 different specialized sociological sub-disciplines.



Tools for finding Data, Statistics, etc.

  • GSS
  • Sociological Abstracts (Chart/Data feature)
  • ProQuest Statistical Insight
  • Data.gov (US) - OA!
  • Eurostat - OA!
  • Kids Count (kidscount.org)


  • Gallup
  • Roper (iPoll)
  • Polling the Nations


Tools for Selecting Videos



Key Databases

  • Sociological Abstracts
  • Ethnic Newswatch
  • Soc Index
  • Social Sciences Citation Index (Web of Science)
  • Social Services Abstracts
  • International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS)
  • Annual Review of Sociology
  • Family and Society Studies Worldwide

insert links to reviews (bibliography committee)


Social Media

  • The Society Pages (Sociology Blogroll)
  • Everyday Sociology Blog
  • Sociology.com
  • ANSS Facebook
  • ASA Facebook, etc etc
  • Sociology Listserves?


Teaching Materials

  • Videolectures.net (OA!)


Key Associations

  • American Sociological Association  (& Regional Associations)
  • ANSS Website
  • European Sociological Association
  • International Sociological Association
  • Rural Sociological Society

Archives or Primary Sources

  • American Memory Project (consolidating with LoC site?)


Institutional Repositories



Tools for selecting _____ . [other categories?]

Links to other toolkits for selecting


Miriam Rigby's picture

Hi All,

I've tidied this up for web-presentation... don't worry too much about formating here, but bullet points and nice spacing will make things easier to read.  Langauge/Grammar edits are as welcome as additions to the content!  Everyone is welcome to contribute constructively!