Using the Biological Literature: A Practical Guide, Fourth Edition

Diane Schmidt

April 14, 2014 by CRC Press
Reference - 412 Pages
ISBN 9781466558571 - CAT# K15521


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  • Presents an updated history of the biological literature
  • Contains both print and electronic resources
  • Includes guidance on performing database searches for the biological literature
  • Lists specific abstracts and indexes, professional associations and their publications and services, databases, standard reference resources (e.g., dictionaries and encyclopedias, handbooks, textbooks and treatises), works describing methods and techniques, periodical literature, and more
  • Recommends both open access and subscription-based journals
  • Provides an associated website with continually updated links to web-based resources


The biological sciences cover a broad array of literature types, from younger fields like molecular biology with its reliance on recent journal articles, genomic databases, and protocol manuals to classic fields such as taxonomy with its scattered literature found in monographs and journals from the past three centuries. Using the Biological Literature: A Practical Guide, Fourth Edition is an annotated guide to selected resources in the biological sciences, presenting a wide-ranging list of important sources.

This completely revised edition contains numerous new resources and descriptions of all entries including textbooks. The guide emphasizes current materials in the English language and includes retrospective references for historical perspective and to provide access to the taxonomic literature. It covers both print and electronic resources including monographs, journals, databases, indexes and abstracting tools, websites, and associations—providing users with listings of authoritative informational resources of both classical and recently published works.

With chapters devoted to each of the main fields in the basic biological sciences, this book offers a guide to the best and most up-to-date resources in biology. It is appropriate for anyone interested in searching the biological literature, from undergraduate students to faculty, researchers, and librarians. The guide includes a supplementary website dedicated to keeping URLs of electronic and web-based resources up to date, a popular feature continued from the third edition.