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SW 650: Theories and Practices of Community Change: Concepts, History and Approaches

Resources to assist students in Social Work 650 in locating information about how theory informs practice in the context of social change and critical justice.

Guides to Social Theory & Theorists

Finding Books

There are many relevant books in the University Library on community change, advocacy, and social movements and their interplay with theory. To search, you may need to be creative and create lists of terms that are related and can be included in a query. Below is an example using the Library's advanced search. Note that the box on the left has been changed to "All Fields" so that the terms will return results whether or not the words are in the title, subject, or description. The quotation marks around words tells the search system that those words must be searched as phrases. The "OR" tells the search system that any one of the terms is acceptable -- not all have to be present in the results.

On the results page you can use the panel on the left to limit results to available online, choose a publication date, language, and other oprions to narrow your results.


Image of advanced search form from U-M Library search

Using Sociological Abstracts to find Theory Articles

Sociological Abstracts

This is an important resource for searching international literature in sociology and related disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences. It provides abstracts of journal articles and citations to book reviews drawn from over 1,700 serials publications, and also provides abstracts of books, book chapters, dissertations, and conference papers.

  • Go to Advanced Search
  • In the top box: enter terms that limit the results to theory pieces. 
    • Use the keyword: theory
    • or, to limit the search and increase the relevance of your results, copy and paste in the following text:  su(theory) OR pub(theory)
  • In the other boxes: enter the terms for your topic. Put phrases in quotes, and put a different topic on each line. If you have multiple terms for a topic, use OR to connect synonyms. 

screenshot of Sociological Abstracts advanced search

su(theory) OR pub(theory)
AND asylum OR asylee
AND immigration OR immigrant

  • Search.  When the results come back, you can limit your results to Scholarly articles and Books under Source Type on the right side of the screen.  
  • Click the article's title to see the full abstract and other information.  Click MGetIt to access the article or find out how to order it.