Internet Resources: April 2019 Edition

Selected reviews of digital reference resources from the April issue of Choice.

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ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials PLUS. EBSCO. Contact publisher for pricing.

[Visited Jan’19] “ATLA Religion Database is a full text database covering literature related to religion,” wrote Kevin McDonough for ccAdvisor. Coverage is deep and extensive, and EBSCO provides a highly functional search interface. Searching by the Scripture field can be difficult, and access is made more accessible through the browsable Scripture Index. The quality of full text PDFs is fair to good, but doesn’t equal the quality of articles available on publishers’ websites. The database is most valuable to universities with strong and active religious studies programs or seminaries. For other educational institutions, web-scale discovery services will likely suffice. Produced by the American Theological Library Association, the product is available only on EBSCOhost. The ATLA Catholic Periodical and Literature Index, a stand-alone Catholic- specific product, was merged into ATLA, the premier index to literature relating to religion. It includes more than 1 million journal articles, 275,000 essay records, 920,000 book reviews, and 395,000 book records. A total of 2,250 journal titles are included, 960-plus of which are currently indexed. ATLAS provides full text coverage for 450 titles in ATLA. Just under 20 percent of the full text titles have embargoes ranging from one month to five years. Some titles are missing several issues of full text coverage. There are, however, “no meaningful alternatives,” McDonough wrote. To read the complete review, go to Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty. —J. Stoehr, CHOICE

Berg Fashion Library. Bloomsbury. Contact publisher for pricing.

[Visited Jan’19] “The Berg Fashion Library is a component of the Bloomsbury Fashion Central suite of products, the most prominent subject-specific database of fashion and clothing research books and articles,” wrote Lore Guilmartin for ccAdvisor. Berg provides hundreds of articles and ebooks; several thousand images; lesson plans and study guides; an online fashion dictionary; a museum directory; and the Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Search results draw definitions from fashion dictionaries and entries from fashion encyclopedias. Images include fashion illustrations as well as photography from prominent museum exhibits and collections. The Berg Fashion Library content is high quality and easily searched. The interface is simple and effective. Easy movement between sources allows for fluid, intuitive research. The site provides solid, well-written, and well-edited content. The user interface has some minor quirks. Choosing to save an item prompts the user to create, then log in to a personal account. The subsequent choice to save the item is to choose “Shortlist” or to create a new folder. To retrieve saved content requires selecting “My Content” from the headings. The differences in labels could be confusing. “However, these concerns are minor,” Guilmartin wrote. “The Berg Fashion Library does what it does very well, even with these caveats.” To read the complete review, to go Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty. —J. Stoehr, CHOICE

Very Short Introductions. Oxford Contact publisher for pricing.

[Visited Jan’19] “Very Short Introductions is a collection of brief examinations of a wide array of subjects,” wrote Thomas J. Beck for ccAdvisor. Each Very Short Introduction (VSI) is referred to in the database as a “book,” and these are divided into chapters. The database’s searching and browsing options can be used to locate both books and chapters. The books themselves are well organized and easy to scan, with an abstract for each (as well as an abstract for each chapter), an introduction, illustrations, an index, and references. Information on the authors of each work and their credentials are also available. Institutions can subscribe to the entire database, or only selected portions of it. Pricing for this database varies substantially, depending on the number of concurrent users, content subscribed to, and type of institution. For many libraries, certain combinations of factors may prove economical. The most expensive of these, and the most difficult for many libraries to afford, will be the unlimited concurrent user options. It is nevertheless a resource of somewhat limited scope. It provides introductions only, and anyone using it for a research project will have to do additional research. Also the licensing agreement, “while it has a few standard features, is unusually long and complex,” Beck wrote. To read the complete review, go to Summing Up: Optional. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty. —J. Stoehr, CHOICE