Biology and Health Guide

Logo for AP Source
Practicing the scientific method drives the hands-on research approach of biology, but to develop a hypothesis, you need to be familiar with relevant research and previous experiments.  This guide will help you develop a search strategy, evaluate sources, write the lit review section of lab reports, and document your sources in APA. 

Nature (1997 - one year ago)
Scientific American  
(Jan. 2005-now, text only)
Science Current Events

 Biopsych and Psych
Physics and Math

Writing in the Sciences
Even if you love the sometimes flowery, sometimes metaphorical style of literary writing, strive for science writing that is focused, conciseclear, and supported by scientific theory, scientific evidence, or both.  Let your creativity show in the originality of your analysis, hypothesis, or evidence-based idea, rather than in your vast repertoire of adjectives.

Understanding Context
  • topic overviews
  • reference book articles
  • secondary articles/essays
  • books - introduction
AP Source - includes Discover, Newsweek, Scientific American, Time, and Psychology Today
ARKive - reference re: plant and animal life with amazing visual imagery of the natural world
Centers for Disease Control
EBSCO ebooks - see list below
Encyclopedia of the Earth
Healthfinder (from USDHHS)
History of Science Sourcebook
Medline Plus (from NLM/NIH)
MW Library Catalog - reference
Online Biology Book - resource recommended by Mr. Barnes
Opposing Viewpoints
PowerSearch (Gale) - books tab; magazines include Popular Science, The Economist, Mother Earth News, and Wired
Salem Health (incl. Psychology)
Salem Science
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Teens Health (from Nemours)
Wikipedia (uneven coverage)
Delving Deeper
  • primary research articles
  • reports and statistics
  • books - detailed chapters
  • data sets
AP Source - includes the journal Nature (with 12-month delay)
BioMed Central - articles
Google Scholar
Highwire Press
Microsoft Academic Research - similar to Google Scholar
MW Library Catalog - books
National Agricultural Library
National Institute on Drug Abuse
NSC Environmental - reports
PLoS ONE - articles
PowerSearch (Gale) - see results under Academic Journals tab
PubMed Central
Science Accelerator - reports
Science Direct (on campus only, limit search to last 5 years)
Specific Projects/Topics
  • assignment-specific links
  • virtual bookshelves
  • handouts
  • tutorials

Course/project bookmark lists

Clark - Forensic Chemistry
Donahue - Biopsychology
Edgerton - Read like a scientist

Genetic News Project

For disease overviews see Gale VRL and Salem Press. Both include genetics reference books.

For news/research, search PowerSearchAP Source, Science Daily (see disorders menu), the health section of a major newspaper, or Google News.

For perspectives, focus on editorials, columns, or viewpoint essays PowerSearch or AP Source

For book reviews, use AP Source. Limit doc type to book review.

Writing samples

News (e.g. human interest)

VA Beach Girl with Down Syndrome Shares Her Spirit

Profile of Scientist/Researcher

The Man Who Could Destroy the World - AP Source

Perspectives (e.g. editorial)

Clarity Needed Over Autism and Vaccines - AP Source

Book Reviews

Brief - Book of Kehls by O'Hagan or Carrier by Rough; or longer style for journals - The Woman Who Walked in the Sea by Wexler

Research (article reporting on new findings from recent study)

Genetic Pathways Linked to CF Severity Pinned Down

Wendy DeGroat,
May 19, 2010, 10:41 AM
Wendy DeGroat,
Dec 6, 2013, 7:36 AM
Wendy DeGroat,
Sep 26, 2013, 8:03 AM
Wendy DeGroat,
Dec 4, 2013, 11:14 AM