Social science sites of the week

Here is the latest roundup of new and interetsing sites for social scientists.
In The First Person
Useful index to letters, archives and oral history narratives in English written before 1900 which is made available by Alexander Street Press. Search by name, date, event to locate suitable collections. These include archives, free and subscription websites. Useful finding aid for researchers seeking biographical information and social history accounts.

European Historical Bibliographies Project
Hosted by the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities. Provides information on fifteen bibliographic databases covering the history of individual European nations. These are useful for locating articles, books and papers about the histories of the nations concerned. Note that although links are provided to their websites access to some requires a subscription. A great examples from the UK is
British History OnlineMaintained by the Institute of Historical Research and the History of Parliament Trust, providing access to core primary and secondary materials. Includes subsections on local history, political history, historical geography, ecclesiastical history and urban history. Highlights include State papers and Victorian county histories.

International Household Survey Network catalog

Maintained by the World Bank Data group it aims to improve the quality and access to information about surveys in developing countries. Key features of the site include a searchable catalogue of over 4,000 surveys covering hundreds of nations worldwide including those in developed nations. These enable users to quickly identify surveys undertaken in a specific nation by national; or international agencies. They include census and population surveys, household and economic surveys. Typical entries give dates, sampling methods and links to websites where information on access can be obtained. The site also has an extensive question bank plus tools and guidelines on micro data collection and questionnaire design and analysis. Entries for some countries date from the 1950s onwards.
For those interested in this topic a related website BREAD, a non-profit organization which specialises in development economics. It maintains a catalogue of data surveys from developing countries focusing more narrowly on poverty and health. 400 currently listed.

National Digital Learning Resources (Ireland)
Works to support Higher education staff in Ireland, with a specialist focus on sharing resources in teaching and learning in Higher Education. The site can be used to find out about Irish teaching and learning projects. It also has a useful catalogue of reusable learning objects. These include tutorials, papers, lesson plans and videos. While intended for Irish use, many have a far wider applicability. All subject areas are covered .There is a section on education and academic support which covers the creation of online learning modules. For instance see podcast of integrating facebook into course communication

Bibliography of published materials about APEC compiled by the Australian APEC Study Centre, Monash University. Includes publications about and by Apec. Links are provided to full text versions where available. These include some documents produced by APEC plus papers from Australian research organisations.

Yale Digital Commons (YDC)
More than 250,000 images are now on open access via the catalogue. These include photographs, prints from major museums and libraries. Collections include the Yale University Art Gallery, Yale University map collection, and Peabody collections. Use the advanced search form to restrict by collection.Key areas are anthropology artefacts, paintings and maps.
For those interested in finding images online Many examples from Europe can of course be found by searching the Europeana catalogue which has access to major holdings from national libraries.

Library of Congress National Jukebox

Free access to historic sound recordings from the library of congress. Currently includes more than 10,000 recordings made between 1901-1925 are available free from the website. Subdivided into genres whichh include classical and popular music, religious themes and spoken word. The spoken word collections include political speeches with fascinating content including coverage and comment on contemporary elections. Copyright and technical information is displayed on the website.

Of course in the UK, the British library provides access to the National Sound Archive. many of these can be explored online and are widely available to UK academic institutions. Highlights include regional dialects, and oral history.

Bridge Global resources database
Bridge is a specialist gender and development research programme located with the Institute of Development Studies. Its website provides free access to a global resources database. This is a searchable catalogue of over 3,000 documents relating to gender and the development process. They include articles, reports, case studies of good practice and guidelines. In many cases the full text can be downloaded. Topics range from women and conflict, to education and health.

Utah Open Textbook Project Determining the Cost Effectiveness and Educational Effectiveness of Open Textbooks
Interesting project which is using the case study of 10 high schools in Utah to consider the impact of exchanging printed science textbooks for open eBooks. It is looking at both financial costs and the impact on student learning and achievement. The website has details on the methodology, papers and reports. It includes a cost calculator.

Biblioteca Digital Hispánica (BDH), the Spanish Digital Library
Is an online resource of the National Library of Spain. Provides free access to a wealth of historic collections from the 15-19th Century. It is possible to browse by resource type (from the advanced search form) or subject. Currently available are books, manuscripts, maps, musical scores, photographs. Themed collections include: Carteles de la Guerra Civil (454 posters associated with civil war); Spanish War of Independence from France; spanish literature and culture
There is also a separate newspaper library Hemeroteca Digital offering free access to several hundred national and regional to to titles. The full list is here most are 19th century. They can be searched or browsed.

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ALISS is a not-for-profit unincorporated professional society. It is an independent group which was formed in April 2005 by the former committee of (Aslib Social Science Information Group and Network)
The aim of the group is to; Provide opportunities for networking and self-development offer a forum for communication create a network of cooperation and a forum for discussion about emerging issues in social science librarianship.

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