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Waidner-Spahr Library

Statistics: Home

Introduction

The guide provides resources to assist you with statistics research.

Some resources are restricted to people currently affiliated with Dickinson.

Because your topic may encompass multiple academic disciplines, students are strongly encouraged to consult with a librarian for help with specific topics.

For additional assistance, don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian!

Tips for Finding Statistics & Data

Issues to consider:

  • the exact data you want may not have been collected or published
  • consider broadening or altering your search (e.g., if you cannot find a statistic for a specific city, perhaps the same statistic for a county or state will do)
  • statistics take a lot of time to gather and compile, so the latest data available may be several years old
  • consider who would gather the statistics you want, and search their website or publications (e.g., for international statistics: World Health Organization and the United Nations; for health statistics for Pennsylvania: the Pennsylvania State Department of Health; for U.S. health statistics: the CDC and other federal agencies)
  • Search Google, but be sure you critically examine the source and reliability of data found this way 

Finding statistics published in books or articles:

The following strategies can help identify articles or books that use and present data. These may point you to an original source for the “raw” data, if it is available to others.

Keywords:

Example:

(statistics or data) and [topic]      

(statistics or data) and birth control

(statistics or data) and [location]

(statistics or data) and europe

(statistics or data) and [topic] and [location]

(statistics or data) and poverty and united states

(statistics or data) and labor and pennsylvania

Additional suggestions:

  • To find older statistics, try adding the keyword historical to your search.
  • Finding too little? Try a broader search approach. For example, just search on statistics on the topic, and don't limit to a specific location.
  • Finding too much? Try using more specific keywords, additional parameters (such as population characteristics), and the “refine” or “limit” options available in the database you are searching.  

Finding statistical studies published as journal articles:

  • Statistical studies published as journal articles tend to be on very specific topics, and it can be very challenging to search for them.
  • Choose a database relevant to your topic to search for statistical data and studies.
  • JSTOR is another good source for published statistical studies on a variety of topics.
  • Your professors or librarians may be able to provide additional assistance for specific topics.