Honors Thesis Library Resources

As you all begin to think about writing your thesis, there are many resources available through the University Library to help you along the way.

The Most Important Resource

The foremost resource is our Honors Librarian, Ms. Jean McLaughlin.  Ms. McLaughlin is available to all honors students, on an individual basis, to help you find the materials that you will need for your thesis.  She is well versed in what is available from our library and how to get material from libraries around the world.  Even if you have the materials you believe you need, a check with Ms. McLaughlin may result in new troves of information that you did not know existed. Ms. McLaughlin can be reached through the honors page on the library website or directly through email jmclaughlin@uamail.albany.edu

Getting Started

As you begin the process of thinking about your thesis, the library has many books that can help you create a plan for starting, working on, and completing your thesis.  Some books that Ms. McLaughlin recommends are:

Badke, W. (2004). Research strategies: finding your way through the information fog. New York: Universe, Inc. [University Library Reserves - Z 710 B34X 2004].
Booth, W., Colomb, G., & Williams, J. (2008). The craft of research. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. [University Library Reference & Reserves: Q 180.55 M4 B66 2008].
Fowler, A. (2006). How to write. New York: Oxford University Press [University Library - PE 1408 F548 2006].
Lipson, C. (2005). How to write a BA thesis: a practical guide from your first ideas to your finished paper. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. [University Library Reserves - LB 2369 L54 2005].
Mauch, J. & Park, N. (2003). Guide to the successful thesis and dissertation: a handbook for students and faculty. Boca Raton: CRC Press. [University Library Reserves or Dewey Library Reference - LB 2369 M377 2003].
Murray, R. T. & Brubaker, D. (2008). Theses and dissertations: a guide to planning, research, and writing. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. [University Library - LB 2369 T458X 2008].
Ng, Pedro Pak-tao. (2003). Effective writing: a guide for social science students. Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press. [University Library - PE 1479 S62 N48X 2003].
Roberts, B. (2007). Getting the most out of the research experience: what every researcher needs to know. Los Angeles: Sage Publications. [University Library - H 62 R57X 2007].
Robson, C. (2007). How to do a research project: a guide for undergraduate students. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing. [University Library - LB 2369 R575 2005].
Russey, W., Ebel, H., & Bliefert, C. (2006). How to write a successful science thesis: the concise guide for students. Weinheim: Wiley-VCH. [University Library - LB 2369 R87X 2006].
Walliman, N. (2005). Your research project: a step-by-step guide for the first-time researcher. London: Sage Publications. [University Library - LB 2369 W26 2005].
Wyse, D. (2007). The good writing guide for education students. Los Angeles: Sage Publications. [University Library - LB 2369 W97 2007].

Finding the Current Literature

As you will all learn, every thesis starts with a review of the relevant literature.  In essence, you discuss the development of the current body of knowledge before you add to it.  Ms. McLaughlin has created a page to help you find the resources that you will need as you begin to gather information to create your literature review:

Doing the Research

The type of research you will do is influenced greatly by your discipline - the process of doing research differs in math, psychology, biology, and English (it can also differ significantly within a discipline).  Your thesis advisors and other professors in your major department will be the best source of information about the process of research you will follow.  There may be some discipline-specific resources available in the library - check with Ms. McLaughlin.

Writing Your Thesis

An important part of writing your thesis will be strategies for citing the literature in the appropriate way and creating a bibliography or reference list.  View valuable information on these strategies. These processes are different across the disciplines.

You should also check with your thesis advisor for specific information about the style for citations used in your discipline.

It Is Never Too Early to Start

You can begin exploring these resources far before you begin writing your thesis.  Doing so will give you a better direction for starting your thesis and may help you avoid mistakes that cost you time and effort.