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Research Resources: Class Guides

GOV 100: American Government


Encyclopedia of the American Legislative System (3 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JF 501 .E53 1994

Congressional Quarterly Almanac (CQ)
Ref. Balcony JK 1 .C663 1961 - 2004
also available online. Provides a summary of legislative activity in Congress for a given year. Each volume begins with an overview of the particular congress, with the major accomplishments highlighted. The following chapters discuss the debate and passage of legislation in 9 broad areas (e.g., economy, defense, foreign policy, appropriations). Roll call charts for the bills are included, as are voting studies, presidential messages, and public laws.

Encyclopedia of Federal Agencies and Commissions
Ref. Balcony JK 9 .H536 2004
Brief profiles, organized mostly by Cabinet department.

The Oxford Guide to the United States Government
Ref. Balcony JK 9 .P384 2001
A comprehensive dictionary of names, topics, events, laws, cases, etc.

A History of American Political Systems: Ideas, Interests, and Institutions (3 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JK 31 .H57 2010

United States Government Manual, 2012
Ref. Desk JK 421 .A3 2012
The official directory of the U. S. Government. The latest edition is also available on FDSys.

Encyclopedia of the American Presidency (4 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JK 511 .E53 1994

Congressional Directory, 2009-10: 111th Congress
Ref. Balcony JK 1011 2009-10
The Directory for the 112th Congress (2011-2012) is also available on FDSys.

Almanac of American Politics 2014 (a second copy is ON RESERVE)
Ref. Balcony JK 1012 .A44 2014 (older volumes in the stacks)
Provides a detailed look at members of Congress and their districts; includes voting records and election results.

Congress A to Z, 5th Ed.
Ref. Balcony JK 1021 .C554 2008
A good dictionary of terms and concepts.

Congressional Quarterly's Guide to Congress, 6th Ed. (2 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JK 1021 .C565 2008
Encyclopedia coverage of the work of Congress.

Congress and the Nation, 2005-2008: Politics and Policy in the 109th and 110th Congresses
Ref. Balcony JK 1021 .C6 Vol. 12 (with 11 previous volumes)
Detailed summary and analysis of the work of specific congresses.

Encyclopedia of the United States Congress (4 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JK 1067 .E63 1995

America Votes (29 vols., so far)
Ref. Balcony JK 1967 .A8
Election returns for president, congress, and governor, arranged by state; published every 2 years.

Guide to U. S. Elections, 6th Ed. (2 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JK 1967 .C662 2010

Almanac of Federal PACs
Ref. Balcony JK 1991 .A744 2008-09

Exit Polls: Surveying the American Electorate, 1972-2010
Ref. Balcony JK 2007 .B47 2012

Political Corruption in America: An Encyclopedia of Scandals, Power, and Greed (2 vols.)
Ref. Balcony JK 2249 .G767 2008

Guide to Political Campaigns in America
Ref. Balcony JK 2265 .G84 2005

The Book of the States (annual)
Ref. Balcony JK 2403 .B6 2013
A directory of state government officials and activities.

Encyclopedia of the American Constitution, 2nd Ed. (6 vols.)
Ref. Balcony KF 4548 .E53 2000

Federal Regulatory Directory, 15th Edition
Ref. Balcony KF 5406 .A15 F4 2012

Guide to the U. S. Supreme Court, 5th Ed. (2 vols.)
Ref. Balcony KF 8742 .W567 2011

Biographical Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court: The Lives and Legal Philosophies of the Justices
Ref. Balcony KF 8744 .B56 2006

The Justices of the United States Supreme Court: Their Lives and Major Opinions (5 vols.)
Ref. Balcony KF 8744 .F75 1997


Congressional Bills
Bills from 1993 to the present are available on FDSys.

United States Statutes at Large
Ref. Balcony KF 50 .U52 (1893 - )
This is the first permanent form of federal laws. One or more volumes are compiled for each legislative session. Recent laws are issued in "slip" format, arranged by Public Law number. Public Laws from 1995 to the present are available on FDSys.

United States Code
Ref. Balcony KF 62 1992 .A2
This is the official codification of all federal laws, divided into 50 subject areas (or titles). Specific subject indexing is included, as well as a listing of the laws by popular names. Also available on FDSys.

Code of Federal Regulations
Ref. Balcony KF 70 .A3
This is the official codification of all federal regulations divided into 50 subject areas (or titles). Also available on FDSys.

Congressional Committee Hearings
U.S. Doc. Y4 ....
Printed transcripts of hearings before House and Senate committees on a variety of topics. Recent hearings are also available online through FDSys.

Congressional Record
U.S. Doc. X/A ....(1921 - present in paper; 1873-1921 on microfilm
Daily transcripts of speeches and remarks delivered on the floor of the House and Senate. The CR is also available online, from 1994 to the present, through FDSys.

United States Reports (559 vols., so far)
Ref. Balcony JK 1561 .U5
The official compilation of U. S. Supreme Court opinions. Recent opinions are available on the Supreme Court's web page.


CQ Weekly Reports
This publication updates the CQ Almanac (see below) with a weekly reporting and analysis of congressional activity. Provides text and summaries of major legislation. This is the best source for tracking the progress of a bill in congress and contains charts for "Bills to Watch" and "Status of Appropriations").

CQ (Congressional Quarterly) Researcher
Published in print and online 44 times a year, the single-themed CQ Researcher report offers in-depth, non-biased coverage of political and social issues, with regular reports on topics in health, international affairs, education, the environment, technology and the U.S. economy. You can view and search across all of our CQ resources here.

Connections to full-text newspaper articles (including the New York Times), business information, and legal resources.

Connections to more full-text newspaper articles (including many not covered in Lexis-Nexis)

National Journal
A weekly political magazine that provides a wide range of news and analyis. This is only good for current material; older articles are not available for free.


FDSys (Federal Digital System)
A service of the US Government Printing Office and the Superintendent of Documents, this provides access to a wealth of current government information. It includes online access to Presidential documents, public laws, Supreme Court opinions, and federal regulations.

Thomas (Library of Congress)
The Library of Congress' electronic access to legislative information: bills, public laws, and committees.

US Supreme Court Web Site
Provides electronic access to recent Court opinions and information about the workings of the Court.

Justices of the Supreme Court
An interactive timeline showing all of the justices from 1789 to the present.

Law Library of Congress
Provides access to court cases, legal information, and legislative resources - from the Library of Congress.

Legal Links
An assortment of online legal and political resources with a focus on constitutional democracy - from the Clough Center, Boston College.

CQ Almanac
An annual overview and analysis of congressional activity. See the description above, in the first section of the class guide. Coverage is from 1945 through 2006.

CQ's Politics in America
Similar to the Almanac of American Politics, with slightly more analysis. The volumes from 2000 to 2008 can be searched here.

Project Vote Smart
A good source for finding voting records of members of Congress, and the members' positions on issues, from a non-partisan volunteer organization.

Real Clear Politics
An excellent gateway to current political articles and opinion pieces from a variety of publications and viewpoints.

Federal Election Commission
A good source for campaign finance reports.

New York Times (ProQuest Historical Newspapers)
The New York Times (Sep 18, 1851 - Dec 31, 2006, full-text) offers full page and article images with searchable full text back to the first issue. The collection includes digital reproductions providing access to every page from every available issue. This is especially good for finding articles on earlier Supreme Court justices. **Proquest has released a new platform; check it out HERE. For Mac Users - Please use Safari as your browser for the new platform.

ProQuest Congressional
Access to publications of the US Congress - indexing, abstracting, and some full-text of committee hearings, reports, bills, and public laws.

Census Bureau
Online access to the 2010, 2000 and 1990 decennial censuses, as well as to the American Community Survey (an annual update of population data). Use Quick Facts to get demographic data on your state or county.

Social Sciences Full Text
Indexes over 300 English-language periodicals covering anthropology, economics, political science, psychology, social work, sociology, and related fields. Includes both Abstracts and Full Text Articles. Covers 1983 to the present.

Catalog of Government Publications
An index of all federal government publications from 1976 to the present.

Last updated: 1/17/14 tk, contact Tom Karel for assistance - 291-3845.

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