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Graduate Music Program Orientation

Guide for Graduate Music students on how to navigate Jenks online and other resources.

A. What is a Library Database?

A library database is a tool that allows you to search for and find different types of information. For Music Education students that information might be scholarly peer-reviewed articles on teaching pedagogy for music instruction or it might be information on a composer or sound recordings. At Jenks Library we have several library databases you can search to help retrieve the information you need.

To select an appropriate database to use, first think about the type of information you are trying to find.

  • Are you looking for scholarly articles? - if yes, choose databases such as ERIC, Professional Development Collection, and Academic Search Complete that help you search by keyword to find peer-reviewed articles.
  • Are you looking for musical term information, biographical information about composers, etc? - if yes, choose databases such as those introduced in the "Starting Points > Background Research Material" section, such as Grove Music Online or Credo Reference.
  • Are you looking for audio files or sheet music? - if yes, choose one of the Naxos databases and browse by composer, time period, and more.

B. How do you access online resources?

C. How to search library databases.

For your research in both music and education, we have many databases that will provide access to different kinds of information. The goal of this video is to introduce you to where you can find many of those resources from the library's database page. In particular, this video will demonstrate searching in the database ERIC, a great tool for education research, to find scholarly peer-reviewed articles on a topic. 

Please note: our new login page still uses your Gordon username and password for access. Enter that information in the two boxes provided and you are in!

Having trouble playing the video? Watch here on the Jenks Library YouTube channel.

D. Start with these library databases.

Music & Education Databases




E. What Does Peer-Reviewed Mean?

An article is considered "peer-reviewed" if it has been reviewed by scholars and professionals within the field of study for which the article was written. This process involves reviewing how the article was written and the research involved in the study. The review process involves an extensive exchange between the review panel and the author(s), and the article can only be considered for publication in a scholarly journal once it has been approved. 

Ask yourself the following questions about the article you are viewing to determine if it is peer-reviewed: 

  • Does the article contain an abstract?
  • Does the article contain a full bibliography?
  • Are the author(s') credentials easily identified?
  • Does the journal contain little to no advertising?
  • Is the language of the article intended for an informed 
  • Is the article lengthy?
  • Does the journal description include the words "peer-reviewed" or "editorial process"?

Finding Peer-Reviewed Articles

Many of our databases make the process of locating peer-reviewed information very easy for us by providing a "peer-reviewed" checkbox limiter on the search screen. Look for that checkbox when you're searching in library databases.