Criminal Justice Subject Guide - Library & Learning Resources - City College of San Francisco Go to the CCSF library's main page Find Books using the library's Catalog Find Articles in periodical & reference databases Search the web Library information, frequently asked questions Go to main CCSF web page

Finding Books

Reserve Books

Subject Headings

Reference Sources

Finding Articles

Career Related Links

Web Resources


Evaluating Sources

Citing Sources

Additional Help

Criminal Justice Subject Guide

Subject guides are designed to help students begin the research process, find reputable sources, and save time.

Searching the Library Catalog for Books & Other Materials

To locate books and other materials in CCSF Libraries, select the Library Catalog from the Library's Homepage. You will notice many ways to search, such as Title, Author, Subject, Subject Keyword, etc.

Examples of Subject searches include: community police boards; gangs; fingerprinting; private prisons; drug related crimes; probation & parole; crimes against women; and criminal law reform.

Reserve Materials

Reserve Materials include books, sample tests, class notes, and other items that instructors put at the library for class use. The check out time is shorter than regular circulating books.

To search for a book on reserve in the Library Catalog, select either Reserves by Course or Reserves by Instructor.

When you have located the materials, write down the Call Number and Title and present this to a staff person at the Circulation Desk.


Browsing the Library Collection

Materials in the Library are shelved by call number according to the Library of Congress classification system. Books are arranged on the shelves by subject.

Relevant areas in the collection to find materials on criminal justice include:

Criminal Justice, Administration of HV 7231-9960
Fingerprints HV 6074
Juvenile Delinquency HV 9069
Police HV 7551-8280.7
Prisons HV 8665

See also the subject subdivisions "Security Measures" or "Crimes Against." Hint: use Subject Keyword Search.


Using Key Reference Sources

Reference books provide background information and overviews on a given topic. Some relevant reference books in criminal justice include:

Encyclopedia of Crime and Justice
Stanford H. Kadish, editor-in-chief. New York: Free Press, 1983.
HV 6017 E52 1983 Rosenberg Reference

Encyclopedia of World Crime, Criminal Justice, Criminology and Law Enforcement
Jay Robert Nash, editor-in-chief. Wilmette, IL: CrimeBooks, 1989-90.
HV 6017.E54 6 vols. Rosenberg Reference

Comparative and International Criminal Justice Systems: Policing, Judiciary, and Corrections
Obi N. Ignatius Ebbe, ed. Boston: Butterworth-Heinemann, 2000.
HV 7419 C65 2000 Rosenberg Reference

Crime in the United States (until 1997 titled Uniform Crime Report)
U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation.
HV6787 A3 Rosenberg Reference (published each year)

Encyclopedia of Women and Crime
Nicole Hahn Rafter, editor-in-chief. Phoenix, AZ: Oryx, 2000.
HV 6046 E56 2000 Rosenberg Reference

Encyclopedia of Organized Crime in the United States: From Capone's Chicago to the New Urban Underworld
Robert J. Kelly. Westwood, CT: Greenwood Press, 2000.
HV HV 6446 K43 2000 Rosenberg Reference


Searching for Articles in Periodical Databases

Periodical databases group together journal, magazine, and newspaper articles by subject. They also usually provide abstracts (brief summaries) and the full text of the articles. Do you need help identifying the differences between scholarly journal v. popular magazine articles?

Note: Most periodical databases are part of the private, passworded Web, so you will need to have a current CCSF ID card with a barcode to access those that CCSF subscribes to. You get the free barcode from the Library either in person or online. More information about obtaining a library bar code.

Infotrac Web
Infotrac is a brand name for several databases with coverage from 1980 to the present. Most useful for hospitality topics are the InfoTrac Business File ASAP, Academic ASAP, and the OneFile. These databases let you limit your results to articles only from scholarly journals by checking the box "Refereed titles." Most useful for locating criminal justice topics are Expanded Academic, Business, and OneFile. References to some professional articles include only the abstract. To locate the full text of these articles ask Librarians for assistance.

CQ Researcher
CQ provides lengthy research reports written by the editorial staff of the Congressional Quarterly Co. Many reports related to psychology are offered, such as depression, teen suicide, children and divorce, stress, etc. Excellent overview of current issues and topics. Includes reports on 3-Strikes Law, Cyber-Crime, Kids in Prison, and similar contemporary issues. Searching for your topic under "Browse" locates entire reports.

Proquest Newspapers
Provides full text indexing of the Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Wall Street journal, and Washington Post -- Time periods vary. Best for descriptions of incidents and crime rates from different areas.

Ethnic Newswatch
Comprised of newspapers, magazines and journals of the ethnic, minority and native press in America, this unique body of materials covers a wide range of current topics and countless other social, political and educational subjects. More than 200 publications covering 1995 to the present are represented, and searchable in both English and Spanish. Articles discuss crimes within and against ethnic groups plus police-community relations.


Finding Web Resources

Below are some examples of academic/scholarly web sites for nutrition. If you use a search engine, such as Google, remember to evaluate the quality of the results.

California Department of Justice: Publications, Reports, and Surveys
Publications and statistics on crime, crime prevention, and legal issues in California, plus calendar of events.

California Governor's Office of Criminal Justice Planning
Links describe OCJP programs, recent reports, and public awareness brochures in the areas of crime suppression, crime prevention, drug enforcement, juvenile justice, victim services, violence prevention, gang violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and child protection.

Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics Online
Brings together data about all aspects of criminal justice in the United States.

National Criminal Justice Reference Service
Comprehensive and well-organized site offering access to information about crime, law enforcement, and criminal justice in the United States with some links to international data.

FBI Laboratory
Information about the Laboratory plus The Handbook of Forensic Services, recent issues of Forensic Science Communications and the most recent FBI Laboratory Annual Report, and brief descriptions of FBI cases.

John Jay College of Criminal Justice
Premier college for the study of criminal justice. Its library homepage is filled with good Web links and titles of specialized material.


Evaluating Sources

Evaluating Webpages: Techniques to Apply and Questions to Ask
A UC Berkeley - Teaching Library Internet Workshops

Critically Analyzing Information Sources
Developed by Olin-Kroch-Uris Libraries at Cornell University.

Evaluating and Citing Source
A quick and easy check list to use when determining the quality of web documents. Prepared by Librarians at CCSF.


Need More Assistance?

For additional help you may contact the Reference Desk by phone at (415) 452-5543 or stop by the East and West reference desks at the Rosenberg Library.

Electronic Reference Service to CCSF students, faculty, staff and registered community users. Use this service when you are NOT in a CCSF library.

Library and Web Research Workshops
Fifty minute workshops are given throughout the semester on effective methods in searching for books, articles and information on the Internet.

Evaluating and Citing Information Sources
Several useful sources for evaluating the quality of web pages, how to prepare citations for a "Bibliography" or "Works Cited" list, and how to avoid plagiarism.

Purdue's Online Writing Lab
One of the most thorough and easy to navigate writing labs available!

A+ Research and Writing
Hosted by the Internet Public Library.

Writing Process @ CSU
Colorado State University developed these guides which "focus on a range of composing processes as well as issues related to the situations in which writers find themselves."

Send comments or suggestions to:

Linda McKinney
Subject Selector
(510) 845-9680

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Last updated February 26, 2003