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Syracuse University Libraries

Political Science: Books

An SU Libraries' research starting points guide for political science

Find Reference Books

You may wish to begin your research by consulting reference books (e.g., dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks).  These may be in print form or in electronic form.  To see a list of some of the most heavily used reference books in political science, consider both of the following categories


In the Reference Collection @ Bird Library

Online Reference Books

Below is a brief list of some of the electronically available reference books in the field of political science.  For more, search the CREDOreference or Oxford Reference Online databases.

Browse Circulating Books

Looking for circulating books on Political Science?  Call numbers for such books often begin with J call numbers (4th floor, Bird Library). Or search the SU Libraries Classic Catalog or SUMMON search engine.
  • SUMMON:  A search engine for most of the Syracuse University Libraries' collections and other resources beyond the SU Libraries.  Includes articles, books, journals, maps, sound recordings, archival materials, government documents, and more.  Use for searching for articles.  Narrow or expand results using multiple search refinements.
  • Classic Catalog:  A list of print and electronic materials available in the Syracuse University Libraries.  Includes books, journals, maps, sound recordings, archival materials, government documents and more.  Search by keyword, author, title, subject heading, or call number.

Books and Encyclopedias

Online Social & Behavioral Sciences Encyclopedia


Special Online Reference Book Titles

SUMMON - Sample Query For PSC Research

SU Libraries SUMMON search engine can help you gather background literature about any topic in Political Science. Depicted below is one simple visual example of a SUMMON search result.

  • Keywords entered, using the "advanced" search option in SUMMON, consist of the terms online and "national security"
    (enclose words meant to stay together within quotation marks). 


  • To hone these nearly 200,000 results down to something more manageable, and to just "book" results  - click on the left column's “content type” refinement option for the category called - "book/ebook." 


  • Numerous other categories can be included or excluded from search results in addition to books (e.g., categories for journal articles, magazine articles, government documents, images, video and more).


  • If seeking only electronic books as results - in addition to limiting results to "book/ebook" - also check the left margin - refine your search option called -  "full text online."


  • NOTE: Owing to the nature of how some U.S. government documents are cataloged - when one refines results to include only "full text online" - books/ebooks - some 'gov doc' items will sometimes still appear on your results lists.


  • Do not forget to use the publication date refinement and/or sorting options to further narrow down search results to a manageable list (or, alternatively, experiment with entry of additional narrowing search terminology)


Summon search interface with result limited to books and ebooks