INTD 700: Research Skills for M.A. Students

World of Books

1. Introduction to Drew Library

2. Transitions

3. Research Process: from Topic to Question to Thesis

4. Styles of Research by Area: Bible, Historical Studies, Theology/Philosophy, Religion & Society, Liturgical Studies

5. Tools of the Trade: Encyclopedias, Bibliographies, Library catalogs, Periodical databases, Internet

6. Subject Encyclopedias

7. Bibliography

8. Library catalogs

9.  Online Books

10.  Evaluating Books

11. Citing Books

Scholarly Articles & Websites

Library catalog
Library Databases

1. Scholarly Articles

2. Websites

3. The Art of Annotation

Academic Study of Religion

Introductory Reference Articles

  • "Civil Religion" in Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity and Society [online]
  • "Religion: Definition & Explanation" in International Encyclopedia of Social & Behavioral Sciences [Ref. H41 .I58 2001]
  • "Religion, Theories of" in Encyclopedia of Science and Religion [online]
  • "Religion" in Encyclopedia of African American History, 1896 to the Present [online]
  • "Religion" in Encyclopedia of Philosophy [online]
  • "Religion" in Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion [Ref. BL53 .E43 2010]
  • "Religion" in Encyclopedia of World Poverty [online]
  • "Religion and Spirituality" in Oxford Encyclopedia of Latinos and Latinas in the U.S. [online]
  • "Religious Communication Theories" in Encyclopedia of Communication Theories [online]
  • "Religious Studies" in Encyclopedia of Religion in America [online]
  • "Religious Studies and Environmental Concern" in Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature [online]
  • "The Study of Religion" in The Encyclopedia of Religion [online]
  • "World Religions" in Encyclopedia of Global Religion [online]
  • "Religion and Art" in (Grove) Dictionary of Art [online]
  • "Religion" in New Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible [online]

Introductory Texts

  • Bird, Darlene, ed. Theology and Religious Studies in Higher Education: Global Perspectives (Continuum, 2009) [online]
  • Chryssides, George D.  Study of Religions: An Introduction to Key Ideas and Methods (Continuum, 2007) [200.71 C558s]
  • Courville, Mathieu, ed.  The Next Step in Studying Religion: A Graduate's Guide (Continuum, 2007) [200.711 N567n]
  • Droogers, Andre, et al.  Playful Religion: Challenges for the Study of Religion (Eburon, 2006) [268.01 P723p]
  • Faggioli, Massimo, ed.  Religious Studies in the 20th Century: A Survey on Disciplines, Cultures and Questions (Lit, 2006) [207.5 R3822r]
  • Ford, David, ed.  Fields of Faith: Theology and Religious Studies for the 21st Century (Cambridge, 2005) [200.711 F463f]
  • Hart, Darryl G.  A Student's Guide to Religious Studies (ISI Books, 2005) [200.71173 H325s]
  • --------------------.  The University Gets Religion: Religious Studies in American Higher Education (Johns Hopkins, 1999) [200.711 H325u]
  • Hinnells, John. Routledge Companion to the Study of Religion, 2010 [BL41 .R685]
  • Idinopulos, Thomas Athansius, ed.  Comparing Religions: Possibilities and Perils (Brill, 2006) [online]
  • Jakelic, Slavica, ed. The Future of the Study of Religion (Brill, 2004) [online]
  • Martin, Craig. A Critical Introduction to the Study of Religion (Equinox, 2012) [BL41 .M344]
  • McCutcheon, Russell T.  Studying Religion: An Introduction (Equinox, 2007) [200.71 M133s]
  • Orsi, Robert.  Cambridge Companion to Religious Studies (Cambridge, 2012) [BL41 .C34 2012]
  • Pals, Daniel. Eight Theories of Religion. (Oxford, 2006) [207 P182e]
  • Sharma, Arvind.  Religious Studies and Comparative Methodology (SUNY, 2005) [207.5 S5312r]
  • Stausberg, Michael, ed.  Routledge Handbook of Research Methods in the Study of Religion, 2011 [Ref. BL41 .R686]
  • Turner, James.  Religion Enters the Academy: The Origins of the Scholarly Study of Religion in America (Univ of Georgia, 2011) [online]
  • William E. Arnal, ed. Failure and Nerve in the Academic Study of Religion: Essays in Honor of Donald Wiebe (Equinox 2012).

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Religion Methodology, Religion Study and Teaching, Religion Study and Teaching Methodology, Religions Study and Teaching
Anthropology of Religion; Church History Methodology; Ecology Religious Aspects; Psychology, Religious; Religion and Literature; Religion and Sociology


Hart, Darryl.  "Bibliographic Essay from: The University Gets Religion: Religious Studies in American Higher Education" [online]
Lauro, Reno.  "Religious Scholarship and the Commodified Imagination" in Religious Studies Review (June 1, 2009) [online]
Mas, Ruth.  "Refiguring Translation in Religious Studies" in Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (2011) [online]
Roscoe, Paul.  "The Comparative Method" in Religion Compass [online]
Wabash Center.  [Webography on the study of religion] [online]
Wild, Mark.  "Urban Christianity in the United States after World War II" in History Compass [online]



  • Klein, Julie Thompson.  Humanities, Culture, and Interdisciplinarity: The Changing American Academy (SUNY, 2005) [AZ183 .U5 K57]
  • Lyall, Catherine, et al.  Interdisciplinary Research Journeys: Practical Strategies for Capturing Creativity (Bloomsbury, 2001) [online]
  • The Oxford Handbook of Interdisciplinarity, 2010 [BD255 .O94]


Subject Headings: Church History Methodology, Religion Definition, Religion Essence, Religion Research, Religion Study, Religions Study Methodology

A Sampling of Recent Articles in ATLA

Cadge, Wendy, et al.  "De-Centering and Re-Centering: Rethinking Concepts and Methods in the Sociological Study of Religion," 2011 [online].
Crockett, Clayton.  "Secular Theology and the Academic Study of Religion."  CSSR Bulletin 37, no. 2 (Apr 2008): 37-40 [online].
Daggers, Jenny. "Thinking "religion": the Christian past and interreligious future of religious studies and theology." Journal Of The American Academy Of Religion 78, no. 4 (2010): 961-990 [online]
Gill, Sam.  "The Academic Study of Religion."  JAAR 62, no. 4 (Wint 1994): 965-975 [online]

Jense, Jesse Sipping.  "Revisiting the Insider Outsider Debate: Dismantling a Pseudo-Problem in the Study of Religion," 2011 [online]
Juergensmeyer, Marc.  "2009 Presidential Address."  JAAR 78, no. 4 (Dec. 2010): 882-895  [online]
Kripal, Jeffrey.  The Serpent's Gift: Gnostic Reflections on the Study of Religion. Chicago: Univ of Chicago Pr, 2006 [online]
Lehmann, Hartmut.  "The History of Twentieth Century Christianity as a Challenge for Historians." Church History 71, no. 3 (Sept. 2002) [online]
Orsi, Robert. "Belief."  Material Religion 7, no. 1 (March 2011): 10-16 [online]
Roach, Catherine.  "Why Religious Studies Can't be Religious Studies (but Why I Like it Anyway)."  CSSR Bulletin 33, no. 2 (Apr 2004) [online]
Taves, Ann.  "Religion in the Humanities and the Humanities in the University." JAAR 79, no. 2 (June 2011) [online]
______. "No Field Is an Island: Fostering Collaboration between the Academic Study of Religion and the Sciences," Method and Theory in the Study of Religion 22, no. 2-3 (2010): 170-188. [online]
Wiebe, Donald.  "An Eternal Return All Over Again."  JAAR 74, no. 3 (Sept 2006): 674-696 [online]

Significant Journals

  • Journal of the American Academy of Religion [online]
  • Religious Studies and Theology  [online]
  • Religion  [online]
  • Method & Theory in the Study of Religion  [online]


Online Media


Biblical Studies

Library catalog
Library databases

The Bible as Library
Authority, Classification, Hierarchy
Resources in Biblical Studies
Versions, Translations

  • Choosing a Bible: A Guide to Modern English Translations and Editions, 1999 [220.52 S541c]
  • Choosing a Bible for Worship, Preaching, Study, Teaching and Prayer, 2006 [220.5 K91c]
  • Unbound Bible
  • Summary

Tools of the Trade

  • Dictionaries/Encyclopedias 
    • Anchor Bible Dictionary, 1992 [Ref.BS440 .A54]
    • New Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, 2006-2009 [Ref. BS440 .N445; online through Ministry Matters]
    • Intervarsity Press dictionaries
      • Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels, 1992 [Ref. BS2555.2 .D53]
      • Dictionary of Paul and his Letters, 1993 [Ref. BS2560.2 .D53]
      • Dictionary of the Later New Testament and its Developments, 1997 [Ref. BS2625.5 .D53]
      • The IVP Dictionary of the New Testament, 2004 [Ref. BS2312 .I89]
    • Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception [Ref. BS440 .E539]
    • Online encyclopedias: Macmillan and Oxford   
  • Concordances, e.g. Strong's
  • Interlinear Bibles
    • NIV Interlinear Hebrew-English Old Testament [Ref. BS715]
    • New Greek-English Interlinear New Testament [BS1965.5]
    • Online interlinear Bible
  • Lexicons and word studies
    • Greek English Lexicon of the New Testament (BDAG) (Ref. PA881 .B38)
    • Brown Driver Briggs, Hebrew and English Lexicon (BDB) (Ref. PJ4833 .B67)
    • Theological Dictionary of the New Testament [Kittel] [Ref BS2312 .K5813]
    • Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament [Ref. BS440 .B5713]
  • Commentaries
  • Interpretive methods
    • Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation,1999 [Ref. BS500 .D5]
    • Handbook of Postmodern Biblical Interpretation, 2000 [Ref. BS476 .H36]
    • And see chapters on methods in The Blackwell Companion to the New Testament [BS2330.3 B63]
  • Bibliography

Key journals

  •   Bible and Critical Theory [online only]
  •   Journal of Biblical Literature
  •   Journal for the Study of the New Testament
  •  New Testament Studies
  •   Finding others in the catalog [using subheading: --Periodicals]

Library catalogsDrew and Worldcat

  • Authority term vs. keyword
    • Bible N T Mark xvi
    • Mark-16
  • Commentaries vs. monographs
  • Biblical history [e.g. Bible History of Biblical events]
  • Social background [e.g. Poor Biblical teaching]
  • Interpretive methods [e.g. Bible postcolonial criticism]

Periodical Databases

Electronic Bibles


Historical Studies


Introduction to historical research

  • Bradley, James E. and Richard A Muller.  Church History: An Introduction to Research, Reference Works, and Methods. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1995 [Ref. 270.072 B811c]

History and the other Areas

Primary vs Secondary sources (from Bradley and Muller, above)

  • Primary source: "A document, datum, or artifact that belongs to the era under examination and that offers the most direct access to the person or issues being studied," p. 39.
  • Secondary sources: "Offer information about an event but stand removed from it either in time or by a process of transmission of information," p. 41.        

Critical editions

  • In the works of antiquity and Middle Ages
    • Corpus Christianorum: Series Latina/Graeca
    • Corpus Scriptorum Ecclesiasticorum Latinorum
    • Thesaurus Linguae Gracae
    • Consult the "Clavis" volumes in the Corpus Christianorum series for guidance to critical editions of biblical and medieval apocyrypha & pseudepigrapha, and the Greek and Latin fathers [Search the catalog with the key words Corpus and Clavis to turn these up]
  • In American religious history, e.g....

Translations (Patristics, Medieval Studies)

  • Guides to choosing
  • Examples in series
    • Loeb Classical Library [Philo, Josephus, Clement, Tertullian, Augustine, etc] 
    • Ante-Nicene Fathers; Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers   
    • Fathers of the Church (CUA Press) [Clement, Tertullian, Augustine, etc]
    • Classics of Western Spirituality [Origen, Augustine, Hildegard, Julien, etc]
    • Library of Christian Classics [Clement, Origen, Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, etc)

Online primary sources fulltext


BibliographyHistory Compass

Printed Concordances

  • Biblia Patristica [Ref. BR66.5 .U53]
  • Complete Concordance to Flavius Josephus [Ref. PA4224 .R4 ]
  • The Philo IndexA Complete Greek Word Index... [Ref.PA4270 .Z5 B67 ]

Key journals

  • Church History
  • Journal of Early Christian Studies
  • Methodist History
  • Religion and American Culture
  • Speculum: A Journal of Medieval Studies

Library catalog

  • Browse searching for geographic and period breakdowns
    • Church History Primitive and Early Church, ca 30-600
    • United States Church History To 1775
    • Social History
    • Christianity and Justice–History
    • Poverty Religious Aspects Christianity History of Doctrines Middle Ages, 600-1500
    • Poor Europe History
    • Christian Sociology--History
  • Subject searching on subheadings
    • su Social History and .... [e.g. monasticism]
    • su Social Ethics and  ....  [e.g. Martin Luther King]
    • su Social Aspects [or Social Conditions] and .... [e.g. women and England]   
  • Source material: add "Sources" to any topic

Periodical Databases

Public Websites

Theology and Philosophy

Research Resources

The Rose Window
Philosophy as

  • Handmaid
  • Way of Life
  • Hermeneute
  • Schooled: Deconstruction, Feminist, Postcolonial, Pragmatist, Process...       

Theology as

  • Doctrinal, Systematic, Constructive, Ecumenical,Comparative, Political
  • Theoretic and methodical: Deconstructive, Feminist, Postcolonial, Process...
  • Interdisciplinary: the arts and sciences
  • Pluralistic: theology of religion



Publisher series

  • Cambridge Companion to: Augustine, Kierkegaard, Postmodern Theology...
  • Blackwell Companion to: Postmodern Theology, Religious Ethics, Study of Religion, The Theologians...
  • Guides for the Perplexed (Continuum): Calvin, Heidegger, the Trinity...
  • Philosophy and Theology (Continnum): Nietzsche, Hegel, Derrida...
  • Live theory (includes interviews) (Continuum): Spivak, Cixous, Haraway, Kristeva...  
  • Routledge Critical Thinkers: Bhabha, Derrida, Levinas, Spivak, Zizek...
  • SPCK Introduction to .... (Continum):  Barth, Nietzsche...
  • Outstanding Christian Thinkers (Continuum): Barth...
  • Fordham Scholarship Online

Key journals

  • American Journal of Theology and Philosophy
  • Black Theology
  • Concilium: International Review of Theology
  • Cross Currents
  • Ecumenical Review
  • Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology
  • Journal of Cosmology (sample article)
  • Journal of Theological Studies
  • Philosophy Today
  • Process Studies
  • Revue de theologie et philosophie
  • Theology Today
  • Zeitschrift fuer Theologie und Kirche
  • Zygon

Key theorists: Barth, Bhaktin, Butler, Cixous, Deleuze, Derrida, Dewey, Habermas, Harraway,
          Heiddeger, Irigaray, James, Jantzen, Kristeva, Levinas, Marion, Merleau-Ponty, Moltmann,
          Tillich, Whitehead

Library catalog
         LCSH: Black Theology, Feminist Theology, Postmodern Theology, Process Theology, 
                Theology of Religions...
         But also: (postcolonial or postcolonialism) and theology

Periodical Databases (beyond ATLA)

Religion and Society


Religion and Society

  • Includes Ethics, Sociology, Psychology, Ethnic Studies, Gender Studies
  • Engages theories: Critical Race Theory, Deconstruction, Feminist Epistemology, Postcolonialism, Queer...
  • Employs methods: Qualitative*, Quantitative, Mixed
    • *Qualitative Methods include: Case Studies, Participant Observation, Interviewing, Grounded Theory...


  • Ethics
    • Encyclopedia of Ethics, 2001 [Ref. BJ63 .E45; also online through Credo Reference]
    • Dictionary of Ethics, Theology and Society, 1996 [Ref. BJ63 .D45]
    • Encyclopedia of Environmental Ethics and Philosophy, 2009 [Ref. GE42 E533]
    • Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature, 2005 [Ref BL31 .E465; also online]
    • Mainline Christians and U.S. Public Policy, 2007 [Ref. BR515 .U88]
  • Sociology
    • New Blackwell Companion to the Sociology of Religion, 2010 [Ref. BL60 .B53]
    • Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology, 2007 [Ref. HM425 .B53]
    • Sage Encyclopedia of Qualitative Research Methods, 2008 [Ref. H61 S234]
    • Encyclopedia of Social Theory, 2006 [Ref. HM425 .E46]
    • Encyclopedia of Religion and Society, 1998 [Ref.BL60 .E53; and online]
    • Encyclopedia of Social Work, 2008 [online]
  • Psychology
  • Ethnic Studies 
  • Gender Studies 
    • Encyclopedia of Feminist Theories, 2000 [Ref. HQ1190 .E63]
    • International Encyclopedia of Men and Masculinities, 2007 [Ref. HQ1090 I58]
  • Education and Children
    • Praeger Handbook of Religion and Education in the United States, 2009 [Ref. LC111 .P78]
    • Harper's Encyclopedia of Religious Education, 1990 [Ref. BV1461 .H37]
    • The Child: An Encyclopedia Companion, 2009 [Ref HQ767.84 .C55]
    • Encyclopedia of Children, Adolescents and the Media, 2007 [Ref HQ784 .M3 E53]
    • Encyclopedia of Children and Childhood: In History and Society, 2004 [Ref HQ767.84 .E53; also online]
  • Reference Universe

Key Journals

  • Ethics
    • Journal of Religious Ethics
    • Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics
    • Environmental Ethics
    • Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture
  • Sociology
    • Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion
    • Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion
    • Review of Religious Research
    • Socioloogy of Religion
    • Social Compass: International Review of Sociology of Religion
    • Sage online journals
  • Psychology
    •    Pastoral Psychology
  • Gender Studies
    • Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion

Some key theorists: Bourdieu, Du Bois, Fanon, Foucault, Freud, Fowler, Kohut, Weber, Winnicott

Searching the Catalog

  • Ethics: Christian Ethics, Social Ethics
  • Sociology: Christian Sociology, Postcolonialism, Power (Social Sciences)
  • Psychology: Object Relations (Psycholanalysis), Psychic Trauma, Systemic Therapy (Family Therapy)
  • Ethnic Studies: African Americans, Asian Americans, Ethnicity, Ethnology United States, Hispanic Americans, Minorities
  • Gender Studies: Feminist Theory, Gender Identity, Homosexuality, Queer Theory
  • Education and Children: Children, Christian Education, Moral Development, Moral Education, Religious Education

 Periodical Databases  

Special Topics

Useful Websites  

Searching the Internet



Women, Gender & Sexuality

I. Reference Works


  • Encyclopedia of Women and Gender (Ref. HQ1115 .E52 2001b . 2 vols.)
  • Encyclopedia of Women and Religion in North America (Ref. BL458 .E52 2006. 3 vols.)
  • Encyclopedia of Women in World History (Ref. HQ1121 .O93 2008. 4 vols.)
  • Encyclopedia of Women and World Religion (Ref. BL458 .E53 1999 . 2 vols.)
  • The Greenwoood Encyclopedia of Women's Issues Worldwide (Ref. HQ1115 .G74 2003. 6 vols.)
  • Women's Studies Encyclopedia (Ref. HQ1115 .W645 1999. 3 vols.) also online
  • Ashgate Research Companion to Queer Theory [online]
  • Encyclopedia of Gender and Society (HQ1115 .E54 2009. 2 vols.)
  • Gender and Education: An Encyclopedia [online]
  • Encyclopedia of Sex and Gender [online]
  • Ashgate Research Companion to Contemporary Religion and Sexuality (Ref. BL65 .S4 A84 2012) [ online]
  • International Encyclopedia of Sexuality (Ref. HQ21 .I68 1997. 3 vols.)
  • Sex and Gender Issues : A Handbook of Tests and Measures (Ref. BF692 .B38 1990)

II. Some Relevant Journals

  •  Journal of International Women's Studies

  •  Journal; of Women and Religion

  •  Journal of Women's History

  • Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society

  •  Gender & Society
  • Gender Issues
  • Gender Studies and Research
  • Journal of Gender Studies
  • Journal of the History of Sexuality
  • Sexuality & Culture
  • Studies in Gender & Sexuality
  • Theology and Sexuality

III. Some Related Subject Headings

  • Women History, Women Social Conditions
  • Sex Roles - Religious Aspects, Feminist Theory, Gender Identity, Queer Theory
  • Homosexuality, Gay Liberation Movement, Lesbian feminism

IV. Some Relevant Databases
Subject Specialist
Picture: Jesse Mann

Jesse Mann
Theological Librarian
Tel: 973-408- 3472

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