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Writing & Research in the Disciplines: Social Sciences

Brief descriptions of the thinking and writing used by individual disciplines; recommended library databases


The Social Sciences include Psychology, Social Work, Sociology, Criminology, Education, Economics, Political Science, Geography and Law among others. Professional and academic writing in the Social Sciences always considers:

  • The dates of material cited. The more current the better.

  • Research methodology. There is a real need to protect human subjects, so these fields often focus on how a topic was researched.

  • Evidence to back up claims: It is particularly important that the writer produces evidence of claims.

  • Writer's analysis: The Social Sciences value how the writer responds to evidence, so paraphrasing is valued over direct quoting.

Writing Guides

Writing in the Disciplines: Journalism  (The University of Richmond)

Organizing your Social Sciences Research Paper: Writing a Field Report
       [e.g., social work, anthropology, gerontology, criminal justice, education, law, etc.]

Psychology  (The Univeristy of Richmond)

Rhetoric/Communication (The University of Richmond)


Research sources

All of the Social Sciences are reasonably well covered in:

In addition, try these databases for the following specific disciplines:


Mass Communication


Social Work

For more subject specific databases, please look at the Library Guides listed below or search the Library Guides page. 

Links to research guides

Below are links to research guides created here at Walker Library either for a specific discipline or program or for a specific assignment.  They will give you a little deeper understanding of what instructors might require.  

LIbrary Catalog

Search beyond MTSU: WorldCat

Books for Writing in the Social Sciences

Use the search Box above to locate for books.