On Display: Democracy 101: American Elections and How They Work

Welcome to primary season!  

While Election Day isn’t until November 3rd, the election process starts much earlier. On February 3rd, the first of the party primary elections and caucuses kicked off in Iowa. Other states will be holding their party primaries throughout the spring. Massachusetts primary voters will be heading to the polls on Super Tuesday – March 3rd.  

But wait – what is a primary? What is a caucus? What is Super Tuesday? How does this whole thing work? 

Head to the Bentley Library to see our latest display: “Democracy 101: American Elections and How They Work”. This display pulls together materials that can help answer those questions and more with a focus on presidential elections. Topics covered in the book selections include primaries and caucuses, campaign finance, public opinion polling, voter behavior, political parties, historical election results, and everything else you might want to know about the American electoral process. You’ll also be able to find some feature films and documentaries about both real and fictional U.S. elections! 

Research. Register. Vote.

We know that for many of our Bentley students this may be your first time voting in a presidential election. Here are some tips: 

  • Research. Research the candidates and different positions to see which candidate you might want to vote for. And don’t forget, this election isn’t just about electing a president – there are elections for Congress, state elections, and your local elections. There may also be different ballot measures that you may be asked to vote on.  
  • Register. Each state has its own rules regarding registration deadlines and how you can register. You’ll want to make sure that you’re all set to vote prior to election day. Check your state’s Secretary of State website or Election Office website for information. The Office of the Registrar here at Bentley offers Voter Registration Information as well.  
  • Vote. Know before election day where your polling place is and when you can vote. Some states offer early voting. For those of you who may not be able to get to your polling place on Election Day, you may need to request an Absentee or Mail-In Ballot. Check your state’s voter information website to find out the process. 

Still want to know more? 

Check out our American Political Elections Research Guide with some Election 2020 specific resources that will get updated throughout the year as we get closer to Election Day. 

New Year - New Databases A-Z page!

The Bentley Library will have a new Databases A-Z page starting in January 2020. The new Databases A-Z page will offer increased functionality and some additional features. Here are some of the highlights:

  • It’s mobile friendly so it can be accessed on any device type.
  • Database descriptions are displayed by default and searchable!
  • See Popular, Trial, or New databases at a glance.
  • Take advantage of the additional filtering options available. Not only can you filter by subject, but you can also filter by database type or by vendor.
Screenshot of Databases A-Z page.

Additionally, when you filter by subject you can also get a list of Research Guides created for that subject area!

Screenshot of Databases A-Z subject filter page for Company Research with Research Guides highlighted.

Start exploring our new Databases A-Z page now!

If you have any questions, please contact a librarian at the Reference Desk.

Database of the Month: Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory

Can’t tell what type of publication an article is from?

Want to verify if an article is from a peer reviewed journal?

Looking for publications in a certain subject area for publishing opportunities?

Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory can help!

Ulrichsweb Global Serial Directory Logo

Ulrichsweb provides information on more than 300,000 journals, magazines, newspapers, and more from a wide range of subject areas. Simply enter the title of the periodical or the ISSN to start learning more. You can also search by keyword.

Ulrichsweb Search Box

Each record provides helpful information including:

  • Serial Type (Journal, Magazine, Newspaper, etc.)
  • Content Type (Academic/Scholarly, Trade, etc.)
  • Publisher information (including links to the publication’s website)
  • A brief description of the periodical and subjects it covers
  • Locations where articles in the publication are indexed/abstracted
Screenshot of Comparative Politics entry in Ulrichsweb

If an Academic/Scholarly journal is refereed that means it is peer reviewed!

Screenshot of Refereed Icon in Ulrichsweb

Start exploring Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory by accessing the database from our Databases A-Z page.


Database of the Month provides a very brief introduction to a useful website or Library database, highlighting key features you should know about. If you would like more information about this resource (or any of the library’s databases), please contact us for research assistance. If you would like a demonstration of this resource for a class, please schedule a research instruction class using the instruction request form.

Introducing Free Access to the Financial Times Online!

Current Bentley University students, faculty and staff members now have free access to the Financial Times website!

The Bentley Library has a subscription that gives members of the Bentley community full access to the content on FT.com. Users can also access the Financial Times using FT apps for iOS and Android.

Financial Times logo.

Account Registration

You can register for an account either on-campus or off-campus! Users must create accounts using their Bentley University email address. Visit ft.com, click “Sign In”, enter your Bentley University email address, and follow the prompts.  

Step-by-step instructions on how to register for an account are available on our Financial Times Research Guide.

Copyright Policy & Permitted Uses

Please note that all users are responsible for reading and adhering to the Financial Times Copyright Policy and Permitted Uses.

More Information & Help:

Additional details are available on our Financial Times Research Guide. If you have any questions, please contact the Reference Desk.  Stop by, call 781.891.2300, or email refdesk@bentley.edu.

Database of the Month: Statista

Need statistics for a research assignment? This month’s database of the month, Statista, is a great place to look!

Statista Logo

Statista is a portal for quantitative data and statistics. This database provides statistics related to industries, markets, consumer behavior, media, and more both in the United States and worldwide.

Screenshot of Statista homepage. Displays navigation menus and main search box.
Statista Homepage as of April 2019.

Use the search box to find information on your topic of interest or browse via the drop-down menus which provide access to different types of information available in Statista.  Statistics can be downloaded in Excel, PNG, PowerPoint and PDF formats.

Result page in Statista for "Number of recreational visitors to Boston National Historical Park in the United States from 2008 to 2018 (in millions)". Displays chart, download options, description of chart, and citation tool.
Example result in Statista. Visit this page on Statista’s website.

Each result page offers an exportable chart or graph, a brief description of the data, and points to the source of the data should you want to track down more information from that source. A citation tool is provided to make it easier to cite the material if you are using it in a paper or project. Suggested citations are available for APA, MLA, Chicago, Harvard, and Bluebook citation styles. Other options provided by Statista include adjusting the chart type under “Settings” and you can also share this information on social media.  Some charts and graphs can even be embedded with HTML code into websites!

In addition to the individual charts and graphs, Statista offers a variety of reports that compile statistics that can help with your research. Statista Dossiers organize top sets of quantitative charts and graphs on a topic onto one browseable page. These collections can be exported as a PowerPoint or PDF file. Take a look at this Statista Dossier on Netflix as an example. 

If you have any questions about using Statista, please reach out to a Bentley Reference Librarian. You can also check out Statista’s Help & FAQ page.

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Database of the Month provides a very brief introduction to a useful website or Library database, highlighting key features you should know about. If you would like more information about this resource (or any of the library’s databases), please contact us for research assistance. If you would like a demonstration of this resource for a class, please schedule a research instruction class using the instruction request form.

Resource of the Month: Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports

Reports created by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) are now available to the public!

With the passing of the “Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018” (H.R. 1625, 115th Cong.), CRS Reports can now be searched and accessed on Congress.gov at https://crsreports.congress.gov/.

Search CRS Reports Homepage

The Congressional Research Service (CRS), a part of the Library of Congress, provides support for all members of Congress and congressional committees. The Congressional Research Service’s experts conduct research and provide analysis to assist legislators. CSR reports provide nonpartisan, objective analysis on a topic.

The reports and other research products produced by the Congressional Research Service cover a wide range of topics related to public policy and areas of interest to members of Congress. Some of the topics covered include issues related to foreign affairs, health care, environmental policy, trade, the economy, and much more.

Content on CRSReports.Congress.gov is available from 2017 to present, with new content being added frequently. Reports may be updated periodically, however prior versions may still be accessed.

Users can download the reports as a PDF. Previous versions of a report can be accessed by looking at the version history.

Record for CRS report

The last update date is clearly marked on each report. A table of contents and citations to sources are also included.

For assistance in using and searching CRS Reports, contact the Bentley Library Reference Desk.

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Database of the Month provides a very brief introduction to a useful website or Library database, highlighting key features you should know about. If you would like more information about this resource (or any of the library’s databases), please contact us for research assistance. If you would like a demonstration of this resource for a class, please schedule a research instruction class using the instruction request form.

On Display: The Great American Read

Looking for a summer reading project? Join The Great American Read!

Join PBS and The Great American Read

PBS wants to know America’s favorite novel. Kicking off on May 22nd at 8 pm ET, The Great American Read hosted by Meredith Vieira will explore some of America’s most-loved novels over the course of eight episodes. Viewers can begin voting for their favorite from a list of 100 titles after the first episode airs. The series will return in the fall as the votes are tallied and the number one book is chosen.

Our lobby display pulls items from the Bentley Library’s collections on the Great American Read book list to make them available in one convenient spot for browsing. The novels selected span a variety of genres and time periods. Titles on the list include Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, The Catcher in the Rye  by J.D. Salinger, Charlotte’s Web by E B White, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, Beloved by Toni Morrison, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, and many more.

Reread one of your favorites or try something new! And, if you don’t have time to read the books we have a number of film adaptations available on DVD.

Can’t make it to the library? We’ve got you covered! See what we have available as an eBook or audiobook through OverDrive that you can access from anywhere.

Participate with The Great American Read discussions on social media using the hashtag #GreatReadPBS and check out their website for fun activities such as a quiz to see how many of the 100 books you have read.

On Display: May 15-June 25, 2018

Database of the Month: Project MUSE

This month we feature Project MUSE as our Database of the Month:

 Image of Project MUSE header

Project MUSE provides scholarly journal and book content in the humanities and social sciences. Students, faculty, and staff conducting research in political science, literature, history, education, religion, cultural studies, gender studies, philosophy, science, mathematics, and more will find that Project MUSE can provide valuable content. Over 120 publishers provide content in Project MUSE including university presses and scholarly societies.

Users have the opportunity to browse by subject area, search in the full text content, or search by author, title, or publisher. Additional limiters can help users filter results further by content types, research areas, languages, and publication dates.

Search Tip: Project MUSE provides clear indictors in the results list that will let you know the access level of a particular listing. However, you can select to only search the content that Bentley University has full access to within Project MUSE.

Project MUSE Access Indicator Symbols

Project MUSE Access Limiter

Full text is available in HTML and PDF formats.

Project MUSE Results List Example

Citation management options include emailing individual links or using Project MUSE’s suggested citations which provides examples in MLA, APA, Chicago, and Endnote formats. There is also the option to save citations to a folder during a search session. Citations in the folder can be exported to RefWorks or EndNote citation managers, saved as a .txt file, printed, or emailed. If you use the folder option, please note that it will expire once your search session ends or you close your browser.

Project Muse Citation Management Options

Search Tip: Always double check any citation you retrieve from a database for accuracy. Consult our Citing Sources guide for resources to help.

For assistance in using Project MUSE, contact the Bentley Library reference desk or check out the video tutorials or user guides provided by Project MUSE.

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Database of the Month provides a very brief introduction to a useful website or Library database, highlighting key features you should know about. If you would like more information about this resource (or any of the library’s databases), please contact us for research assistance. If you would like a demonstration of this resource for a class, please schedule a research instruction class using the instruction request form.