Research Thursday: Highlighting Archives Unbound

a screenshot of the Archives Unbound collections page

Archives Unbound is a database that consists of 28 topically-focused digital collections. Each digital collection includes primary source materials that support the research and study needs of scholars, researchers, and students. Collections span topics from the Middle Ages to World War II and twentieth-century political history.

The database includes advanced search filters which offer the ability to narrow focus to parameters such as certain date ranges, content types, and languages across collections. Users can discover related search terms that commonly occur in relation to their own search term, which helps uncover hidden connections, or can be a helpful starting point in the early stages of research. The term cluster for “disaster” might bring up related topics such as “Mining Disaster,” “Fire,” or “Earthquake,” prompting users down different research paths.

Research Thursday: Find copies of course syllabi in DSpace

Did you know that faculty members submit copies of their syllabi to DSpace? If you need to find a syllabi for a particular course, all you need to do is log into DSpace.

  1. To log into DSpace, go to DSpace, and click Login in the top-right corner or in the left-side menu and sign in with your Allegheny College username and password.
    image of DSpace homepage

  3. To find the Syllabi collections, scroll down to Communities in DSpace and click on “Merrick Archives”. On the next page, click on “Provost and Dean of the College RG 5”. Finally, click the Course Syllabi link in the list of collections.
    Image of steps to navigate to the course syllabi collections

  5. Syllabi are organized into Fall and Spring semesters. To find a specific syllabi, click on one of the collections, and browse by author to search for the professor who taught the course. To find syllabi by department, browse by subject.
    Image of Syllabi collections page

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Research Thursday: Highlighting HeinOnline database

HeinOnline is a valuable research platform hosting over one hundred different databases dedicated to case law, international treaties and agreements, and government documents. The platform is routinely updated with timely, topical research materials. Recent additions to HeinOnline include materials related to civil rights and social justice, COVID-19, and executive privilege,

screenshot of HeinOnline homepage

Start your journey into HeinOnline by using it for your own research or exploring 10 Historical Events You Didn’t Know Happened in March.

Research Thursday: Use JSTOR’s Text Analyzer tool to explore research topics

Have you heard about JSTOR’s Text Analyzer tool? The Text Analyzer tool accepts PDFs, Microsoft Word documents, or images of text and generates a list of research articles and subject terms to help you find new research sources. Watch this video to learn more about JSTOR’s Text Analyzer tool.

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How to try the Text Analyzer tool for the first time.

  1. Go to JSTOR Text Analyzer to get started.


  3. Upload a document with text in it. It can be an article you found, a paper you’re writing, or a picture of a page from a book. If you want experiment, JSTOR provides a test document you can click and drag to upload into the tool. The Text Analyzer tool will process the document and redirect you to the results page.


  5. On the results page, you can adjust which prioritized terms are used and how important they are in the Analysis section. These terms are autogenerated, but you can also add your own if the tool did not include the ones you want.


  7. You can also adjust important search filters like the publication year, content type, and access type in the Search Filters dropdown menu.


  9. Finally, you can browse through the list of results generated by the tool.

File types supported

You can upload or point to many kinds of text documents, including: csv, doc, docx, gif, htm, html, jpg, jpeg, json, pdf, png, pptx, rtf, tif (tiff), txt, xlsx. If the file type you’re using isn’t in this list, just cut and paste any amount of text into the search form to analyze it.

Languages supported

English, Arabic, (simplified) Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Turkish (see FAQ, below, for details)

Research Thursdays: Find the latest research on COVID-19

Scientists around the world are rushing to understand the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. Proquest has created a database to curate new, openly available research related to COVID-19 and the study of coronaviruses. To view more research related to COVID-19, please check out the Coronavirus Research Database

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Research Thursday: New Digital Collections at Allegheny College

We are excited to announce that LITS has recently made three new digital collections publically available in the Allegheny College Institutional Repository (DSpace) for research and general use.

Allegheny Strong: A Digital Collection of Reflections on the COVID-19 Pandemic

This collection is the result of an invitation to Allegheny College Community members to submit their personal reflections on how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted their lives and the lives of those around them. The collection shares these items as a way to build understanding, strengthen our community, foster human connection, and preserve personal accounts of this global event for future generations and scholarly research.

Submissions to the collection are still being accepted. If you would like to contribute to the collection, please review the submission instructions.

The Civil War Letters of Pvt. Willard A. Cutter

handwritten letter
This collection contains the letters (handwritten with typed transcripts) of Willard A. Cutter, a private in the 150th Pennsylvania Regiment, Company, also known as Lincoln’s Guard. The letters document conversations between Williard Cutter and his mother, Eliza Cutter, and two brothers George Cutter and William Cutter, who all lived in Meadville, Pennsylvania. The letters were written from Soldier’s Home, the White House and Washington, D.C.

For further information about these letters, please contact Jane Westenfeld (

Reflections on Social (In) Justice: A Digital Collection

This collection is the result of an invitation to Allegheny College Community members to submit their creative works that best convey their experiences and express their thoughts and feelings during the period of social unrest of 2020. The collection shares these items as a way to build understanding, strengthen our community, foster human connection, and preserve personal accounts of these troubling events for future generations and scholarly research.

Submissions to the collection are still being accepted. If you would like to contribute to the collection, please review the submission instructions.

If you’re interested in exploring other Allegheny College digital collections, please visit LITS digital collections for more information.

Research Thursday: Create groups of images in Artstor

What are groups in Artstor and why would you want to use them?

Groups allow any Artstor users to create sets of items to share, export, and add descriptive information. There are two kinds of groups: Private or Institutional (within Allegheny College).

How to create groups in Artstor

  1. To create a group, you first need to log in to Artstor. To log into Artstor, go to Databases A-Z on the LITS website and select the Artstor link. If you are signed in properly, you should see your email address in the top right corner of Artstor.
  2. To view your existing groups, select Groups from the Browse menu.
  3. If you haven’t created any groups yet, go to a collection to select items for your new group. To select items for your new group, hover over the top right corner to select (on a desktop) or tap the checkbox (on mobile) to select items.
  4. After you have select the items you want to add to your group, go to the Organize menu item and select “Save Selections to a New Group”.
  5. Finally, complete the Create New Group form to complete your new group. Title and sharing permissions are required. You can add an optional description or subject tabs.

Introducing Research Thursdays Newsletter

LITS is rolling out a newsletter about research sources at the library! Stay up to date by subscribing to the LITS News and Updates. New posts will be published on a biweekly schedule. 

Since this is the first week, we’d like to highlight Adam Matthew Digital, an essential database for primary source materials that hosts millions of primary source records across many different disciplines. The Adam Matthew Digital database organizes material into curated subject areas. In addition to primary source access, each subject collection offers access to data visualizations, copyright information, and information about institutions who contributed materials.

Users who are new to Adam Matthew Digital can orient themselves with the detailed interface by viewing instructional videos created by Adam Matthew support staff.

Tip Tuesday: Set Your Status as Away in Google Chat

Did you know can choose from several status options in Google Chat? You can set your status as available, away, or busy until a set time. When you set your status to away, you will appear offline to others even if you are using Google Chat. This can be a useful way to communicate to others that you are not available.

To adjust your Google Chat settings, follow these instructions:

  1. Go to your Gmail or Google Chat account.
  2. Look for the Google Chat status menu. The default setting is Active.
    Google chat status menu set to Active
  3. To change your status, click the menu and select a new status from the dropdown list. In Gmail, the dropdown menu will look like this.Google chat dropdown menu in Gmail

    In Google Chat, the dropdown menu will look like this.

    Google Chat dropdown in Google Chat

  4. If you want to be away long-term, set your status to “Away”. Otherwise, select “Do not disturb” for up to 24 hours.

Read more about adjusting your Google Chat status settings
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Tech Tip Tuesday: Virtual Backgrounds in Google Meet

Google Meet now offers the option to select a virtual background! These backgrounds can be changed at any point during the meeting.

To select a virtual background prior to starting a meeting, click on the Change background icon in the bottom right corner of your video preview.

To change your virtual background within a meeting, click on the three dots within the white bar. From there select Change background.

Please note that using virtual backgrounds may cause your computer to run slower.