Social Policy


Where to find help

Hamilton Students
  • Ask for help at the level 2 library desk
Tauranga students

Waikato Reading List for SOCPY201

Here is your Waikato Reading List.

Don't forget to log on to see scanned items if you're working from off campus.

Today's Tutorial is to help you with two assignments both of which involve doing your own research.

If you're really keen check out this guide: Literature Reviews

Reading and analysis exercise and your Select Committee submission

This page will stay up all semester so that you can go back to it when you need to. We hope it helps. Remember how to get back to it.

How to start? Finding your own books and articles for your topic is not as scary as it sounds! Let's start with Library Search

Library Search has  printed, online and video guides. If you need assistance, please contact a librarian. You can ask us, or use Library chat, or email [email protected]. See also: ALL TIPS.

Here is a link to the Library Search Guide

Library Search is is an "aggregated search tool" that searches through ALL of our subscribed databases in one go. It is brilliant for looking for articles or books if you know their titles.

Look at this Search Strategies guide sometime

N.B. Library Search doesn’t search all of Index New Zealand. It does have lots of New Zealand material from other sources, but if we're doing a comprehensive search on a topic we need to search Index New Zealand as well. See below for help.

Library Search For Finding Books

Use Library Search to find print and online books. Log on/Sign in with your university email and password if necessary to access online resources. This is how the system recognizes that you should have access.

DEMONSTRATION: Look for a print book by its title:The Wiley Blackwell companion to the sociology of families

Under Resource Type select Books.

Select the option with a print book. Where is it? Tauranga students, which version would you use? Is there a difference between the Ebook Cental version and the Wiley Online ebook?

DEMONSTRATION: Finding an online book: Contemporary grandparenting/Sara Arber, and downloading PDF.

You can use Library Search to find books on a topic as well. Think about your key words and use filters to narrow your search.


Children in care

Then look at the subject filters (Show more)

Maybe Social work with children, would that be the best choice?

You will get a different result with this search 

Children in care "new zealand"

(Search tip:  Using phrase searching tightens your search results  e.g."paid work". This works on most databases).

Then look at the filters and try Foster home care.

You can now see some new subject filters, would the filter Kinship care help?

Would it help to look at the list of Authors/Creators?

Library Search For Finding Journal Articles

Use Library Search to find articles on a topic in the same way as we looked for a book on a topic

EXERCISE: find an article on families and paid work in the same way as we looked for books on a topic.

Search tip:  Use phrase searching to tighten your search results  e.g."paid work". This works on most databases.

Go to Library Search.

type families and "paid work" into the search box.

Under Availability select Peer-reviewed journals

Look at the filters.

Choose the Subject filter Families & Family Life.

Select a good looking article and download the full text.

Using Subject-specific Databases to Find Articles

Why do we want you to use our databases?

  • The best information is not free! (We pay for all the databases we provide access to. Use them!)
  • Subject databases allow more focused searches than Library Search does
  • We hope that our databases avoid predatory publishers - the bad guys of the publishing world - so you are getting good academic information

Index  New Zealand

WHY? For articles in journals published in New Zealand (they aren't found by international databases)

DEMONSTRATION: Search for welfare. Refine results by Resource Type/Research Articles.

Look at Item 1, and check the  Online Access link.

Sometimes it may be a bit harder to get the full-text of an article.

DEMONSTRATION: Search for welfare reform. Refine results by Resource Type/Research Articles

Look at item 3. Click on  Check holdings. If this happens to you, try searching in Library Search by the title of the journal, in this case Social Policy Journal of New Zealand. Then click on the link to the journal and find the right volume, issue and pages for the article. Dec.1998, 11, 1-27. Note the date you need! Use the Open Access E-journals link.

NOTE: Index New Zealand is an INDEX, not always a full-text database. It tells us about articles, sometimes we still have to find them in Library Search.

Remember that Library Search isn't good at New Zealand material. So, if you don't find the article immediately, we may have a subscription to the journal the article is in, and it may be online.

If the article is from a newspaper, trying pasting the title of the article into Newtext Plus (see below for link)

Proquest Social Sciences

EXERCISE: Type families and "paid work" and "new zealand" into the search box. Why are some articles full-text and some aren't?

Sometimes it's because we don't have a subscription to the journal the article is in

Sometimes we have to try this - Look at item 3  , click Find a Copy and then Find@WaikatoLibrary. Eureka!

Sociological Abstracts

This works like ProQuest Social Sciences

DEMONSTRATION: Type families and "paid work" and "new zealand" into the search box.

Plus: Google Scholar

IMPORTANT! If you're off-campus, use Google Scholar from the Library Databases page so that it links to the library databases or follow this quick guide to set up Google Scholar from home.

DEMONSTRATION: Looking for a known article on Google Scholar can give you extra information. Type Doing family without having kids into the search box.

Cited by – Why is this important?

Searching Government Publications

You may want to use a government paper for your Report.

Which government department deals with your topic? See

Another way to get the best out of government publications - go to Government A-Z

Find the Government Department you think will help. Click on the link, and at the next page, choose website from the list under Contact. Then you can use the search box to search for your topic.


use Government A-Z

Look for the Oranga Tamariki link

find some Oranga Tamariki reports (see About Us, and select Reports and releases)

Searching online

Use Google to search within a website or domain:

You can search within a specific website or the domain (ending) of a website address.

DEMONSTRATION:  homelessness policy

This will find results from any New Zealand government website with the terms homelessness and policy.

DEMONSTRATION: "substance abuse"

This will find results from the Ministry of Health website with exact phrase "substance abuse".

Try the search within the search box on the Ministry of Health website and note the difference in results.

Finally: APA Referencing

See the APA Referencing Style Guide Look at the APA Style: Common Examples pages and follow the examples exactly

DEMONSTRATION: Understanding a reference. How do you know a reference is a book? How do you know a reference is a journal article?