Research Guide to Philosophy

| Citing Sources | Reference Books | CONSULS Catalog | Databases & Indexes | Locating Periodicals | Interlibrary Loan | Questions? |

Citing Sources to Avoid Plagiarism

Plagiarism is a form of cheating which may lower the grade you receive on your assignment. You must cite the source of any direct quotation and any facts or ideas you obtained from a source other than yourself. For more information about how to avoid plagiarism, please see this brief video from Bainbridge College in YouTube: Plagiarism: How to Avoid It (

For tips on citation format, please see Diana Hacker's Humanities: Documenting Sources ( or the MLA Formatting and Style Guide courtesy of the OWL: Purdue Online Writing Lab (

Reference Books for Background Information

Reference books are shelved by Library of Congress call number in the reference stacks on the first floor of the Ruth Haas Library. They may not be checked out, but photocopiers are available for student use on the first and third floors of the Haas Library.

General Reference Resources in Philosophy

A Dictionary of Philosophy. Third edition (Lacey).Ref B 41.L32 1999
Dictionary of the History of Ideas. 5 volumes.Ref CB 5.D52
Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Second edition. 10 volumes.Ref B 51.E53 2006
The Oxford Companion to Philosophy. Second edition.Ref B 51.O94 2005
The Routledge Dictionary of Philosophy. Fourth edition (Proudfoot).Ref B 41.L32 2010
The Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 10 volumesRef B 51.R68 1998

Specific Reference Resources

Biographical Dictionary of Twentieth-Century PhilosophersRef B 104.B5 1996
A Companion to EpistemologyRef BD 161.C637 1992
Encyclopedia of Aesthetics. 4 volumes.Ref BH 56.E53 1998
Encyclopedia of Applied Ethics. 4 volumes.Ref BJ 63.E44 1998
Encyclopedia of Chinese PhilosophyRef B 126.E496 2003
Encyclopedia of Classical PhilosophyRef B 162.E53 1997
Encyclopedia of Ethics. 2 volumes.Ref BJ 63.E45 1992
Encyclopedia of Perception. 2 volumes.Ref BF 311.E566 2010
Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment. 4 volumes.Ref B 802.E53 2003
Encyclopedia of the Mind. 2 volumes.Ref BF 441.E53 2013
The Facts on File Encyclopedia of EthicsRef BJ 63.E46 1999
The Oxford Companion to the Mind. Second edition.Ref BF 31.O94 2004
The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and Rome. 7volumes.Ref DE5.O95 2010
The Oxford Handbook of AestheticsRef BH 56.O94 2005

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CONSULS Online Catalog for Books and Media

CONSULS catalog workstations are located in the Reference Area on the first floor, and on each of the other floors of the Haas Library. You may logon to CONSULS via the WCSU Libraries Homepage at or directly at For more detailed instructions on searching, please see the yellow CONSULS flyer on the display rack on the first floor.

Please Note: CONSULS ignores upper and lower case, and you may omit punctuation, except the hyphen which must be replaced by a space.


Select Author at the CONSULS Main Menu, then type the writer's name last-name-first. Correct spelling is important.

Example: russell bertrand (press ENTER)
Example: aristotle (ENTER)

To limit search results to items owned by WCSU, click on Limit/Sort and then select WCSU under "Where Item Is Located."


Select Subject at the CONSULS Main Menu, then type the writer's name last-name-first. Correct spelling is important. To limit results to items owned by WCSU, click Limit/Sort and then select WCSU under "Where Item Is Located."

Example: russell bertrand (press ENTER)
Or just: russell ber (ENTER)

CONSULS will retrieve a list of Library of Congress subject headings that begin with the words you typed:

Russell Bertrand 1872-1970 (main heading is subdivided)
Russell Bertrand 1872-1970--Bibliography
Russell Bertrand 1872-1970--Criticism and interpretation
Russell Bertrand 1872-1970--Political and social views

PLEASE NOTE: Personal name headings may also be subdivided by the titles of well-known works, for example:

Russell Bertrand 1872-1970--Principia mathematica


Select Title at the CONSULS Main Menu, then type as much of the title as you remember in correct word order. In CONSULS, you may omit "a," "an," or "the" at the beginning of a title.

Example: critique of pure reason (press ENTER)
Or just: critique of pure rea (ENTER)


Select Subject at the CONSULS Main Menu, then type the Library of Congress subject heading that best describes your topic. Correct spelling and word order are important. The complete list of Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) is published in a set of big red books available in the Reference Area on the first floor.

Example: Humanistic ethics--History (press ENTER)
Or just: humanistic ethics (ENTER)

Example: Logic, Symbolic and mathematical--History (ENTER)
Or just: logic symbolic (ENTER)


Select Keyword(s) at the CONSULS Main Menu, then type words that best describe your topic, in any order.

Example: (computer* or computing) and ethic* press ENTER
Broader: electronic* and technolog* and ethic* ENTER
Narrower: social network* and ethic* ENTER

Example: bertrand russell and logic* press ENTER
Narrower: bertrand russell and logic* and proof* ENTER

Use the * (asterisk) as a truncation symbol to retrieve variant forms of a word root. Use the Boolean OR to expand your search by including synonyms and related terms. When using two different Boolean commands in the same search statement ("and" and "or" in the preceding examples) you must include parentheses to indicate which command is to be performed first.


If the item you need is owned by one of the other CSU Libraries (CCSU, SCSU, or ECSU) but not by WCSU, or if the WCSU copy is checked out, you may order the item via Inter-Campus Loan. Select the Request option at the full record display in CONSULS, then select "WCSU" and type your campus network username and password. Be sure to specify a pickup location (Haas or Young Library) before initiating your request.

There is a limit of ten (10) Inter-Campus Loan requests per person. Videos are available via Inter-Campus Loan. Please allow 3-4 working days for delivery to the Haas Circulation Desk. Items borrowed via Inter-Campus Loan may be renewed if no one else has placed a HOLD on the item.

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Online Databases for Finding Articles, Images, and Media

Academic Search Premier in EBSCOhost
Coverage: 1990 - present (earlier for many publications)
Location: Under Articles & Databases: Most Popular at the WCSU Libraries Homepage.
Scope: Indexes over 8,000 newspapers, magazines, and scholarly journals in most fields (including art), with 4,500+ available in full-text.
Coverage: Issue number one to within 3-5 years of present
Location: Under Articles & Databases: Most Popular on the WCSU Libraries Homepage.
Scope: Complete full-text backfiles of over 500 core scholarly journals in more than 50 disciplines, including art and art history.
Communication & Mass Media Complete (CMMC) in EBSCOhost
Coverage: Issue number one to present for some publications
Location: Listed under Articles & Databases: A-Z on the WCSU Libraries Homepage.
Scope: Full-text of over 570 scholarly journals in communication and related fields, with selective full-text and/or indexing and abstracting of an additonal 320 journals.
Films on Demand
Coverage: High-quality streaming video and multimedia content for academic, vocational, and life-skills users.
Location: Select Films on Demand under Articles & Databases: A-Z at the WCSU Libraries Homepage.
Scope: Educational videos released by the Film Media Group under the brand names Films for the Humanities and Sciences, Cambridge Educational, Meridian Education, and Shopware.

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Locating Periodicals in the Haas Library

The Haas Library subscribes to many print magazines and journals in art and photography. Additional art periodicals are available in online full-text in journal databases. To find out if WCSU subscribes to a specific periodical in print or online:

1. Select Journal Title at the CONSULS main menu, then type the name of the periodical (example: southern journal of philosophy) and press ENTER. If a title list appears on the screen, select the desired title, then look inside the box to find WCSU holdings. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of the screen to see if WCSU owns backfiles on microfilm or microfiche.

2. To find out if a given periodical is available in full-text in one or more of WCSU's online databases, use the A-to-Z Journal Title Locator available under Articles & Databases on the WCSU Libraries Homepage (

How to Use Interlibrary Loan

If the CSU Libraries do not own the book or periodical you need, you may request delivery of the item from another library via Interlibrary Loan using the online ILLiad system available at:

There is a limit of 5 Interlibrary Loan requests per person per day. Media items are not available via Interlibrary Loan. Under most circumstances, Interlibrary Loan is a free service, but please allow at least ten working days for delivery. You will be notified as soon as the material arrives. Faster document delivery service is available for a reasonable fee. Please see the librarian at the Reference Desk or call the Interlibrary Loan Desk at (203) 837-9114 for more information.

Do You Have a Question?

The Reference Desk on the first floor of the Haas Library is staffed by a professional librarian, trained to assist in your research, or you may contact Joan Reitz, Instruction Librarian, at 837-8308 or My office is located in Room 402 on the fourth floor of the Haas Library, near the glass elevator. Please drop in if you need assistance!

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Please send your comments to Joan Reitz, Haas Instruction Librarian, Western Connecticut State University.
Last updated on March 27, 2014.