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Introduction to the study of history: Introduction

How does this training work?

This training in the form of a LibGuide is divided into a number of tabs. Some are assignments and some are background information. Go through the tabs one by one, from left to right and from top to bottom.

You will learn about:

  • many different types of publications
  • different ways of searching
  • useful databases.
  • scientific integrity

When you're finished tell us what you think about the LibGuide. Use the final tab to answer a few simple questions. That way you help us build a better guide for next years' students.

Good luck completing the assignments!

Welcome to this training

This training is part of the course Introduction to the study of history. During this two hour training you are going to develop your own online searching skills. And you are going to gather literature for your own chosen subject. The LibGuide will be open and available for as long as the course lasts.

If you have any questions during the training, don't hesitate to ask the teacher or library staff member present. After the trainng you can put your questions to the service desk in the library in the city centre during office hours or email us at

This is what you are going to learn today:

  • quickly find literature you already have some details about.
  • recognize different types of publications and find them.
  • find literature your self about your chosen subject.

Part of the information in this LibGuide has been taken from the Onderzoekgids Geschiedenis.

Why would you learn to search?

Searching for and finding literature is the base of every scientific research. Often it's not difficult to find information, but finding the right information scientifically, can be. How do you know if you can trust your information? How do you know you have found the most important literature out there on your subject? How do you make sure you get a copy of what you need? This is what we want you to understand: Make sure you understand what you're doing and keep a critical eye on what you find.

What can and what can't the library offer?

You can always find information and it's everywhere, on the internet for example. But a lot of scientific literature is not freely available online. The Library has a large annual budget for books and journal subscriptions. Both digitally and in print. If you're using the library's databases it's much more likely that you will have access to the literature you have found.

It's also possible that your literature won't be available in Utrecht, we can't buy everything and we make some tough selections. However you are welcome to suggest titles for us to purchase by filling out this form.