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Ethnic Studies: Home

Library Information

Fall Semester 2023


Monday: 8 am - 8 pm
Tuesday: 8 am - 8 pm
Wednesday: 8 am - 8 pm
Thursday: 8 am - 8 pm
Friday:  8 am - 5 pm


Circulation Desk: (805) 546-3155
Reference Desk: (805) 546-3157



Monday: 9 am - 7 pm
Tuesday: 9 am - 7 pm
Wednesday: 9 am - 7 pm
Thursday: 9 am - 7 pm
Friday:  9 am - 5 pm


Circulation Desk: (805) 591-6211
Reference Desk: (805) 592-9410

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Video: how to use OneSearch

How to use this guide


This guide is designed to help you start your Ethnic Studies research.  Use the tabs to navigate this guide, and be sure to scroll down to see the content on each page.

Please feel free to email me if you have additional research questions, would like to set up an appointment, or have other sources to include in the guide.

Research: Keywords and Subject headings

When searching for articles or books in our online catalog or databases, the best research method is using KEYWORDS.

Conducting research on any ethnic group you must consider the range of labels we use to identify ourselves and others:

  • Chicano or Mexican American can be used but also consider Hispanic or Latino.
  • For other Latino groups use the specific Latino population like Puerto Rican, Cubans, Dominican Republic, etc.
  • Black and African American and remember historically used terms as necessary.
  • Asian American - Chinese, Japanese, Taiwanese, Vietnamese, etc.
  • Native American - Hopi, Cherokee, Navajo, etc. 
  • Lastly, remember to review the subject identifiers for possible keywords in your book and article searching.

This page includes content adapted with permission from the Benedictine University Library - 2021.

Effective library database searches use the best keywords and subject headings for the topic at hand. For topics related to race and ethnicity, it may be necessary to think about how a population has been described in the past in order to come up with a complete list of effective search terms.

Here are some examples:

Ethnicity and Race in General
- antiracism
- antisemitism
- ethnic groups
- ethnic relations
- ethnicity
- Islamophobia
- minorities
- people of color
- race
- race discrimination
- racial
- racial profiling in law enforcement
- racism

African Americans
- Afro Americans
- African Diaspora
- Blacks

Asian Americans
- Chinese Americans (or other specific nationalities)
- Oriental or Orientals

European Americans and whiteness
- Caucasians
- European Americans
- White ethnicity
- Whiteness
- Whites -- Race Identity

Immigrant Populations
- immigrants, immigration
- emigration
- undocumented immigrants
- [nationality] and immigration (example: Guatemalans and immigration)

Latino Americans
- Latino/as
- Hispanics
- Hispanic Americans
- Chicano/as
- Mexican Americans (or other specific nationality)

Native Americans
- American Indians
- Indians of North America
- First Nations
- Native Americans
- Cowlitz Indians (or other specific tribes)


Ethnic Studies goes far beyond a description of basic ethnic groups, with a framework for understanding power, inequality, and advocacy. Some additional terms and topics that should be looked at (from the Course Outlines of Record) are: 

-White supremacy
-Jim Crow Segregation
-Mass Incarceration
-Forced Sterilization
-Eugenics movements in the United States
-Racial profiling
-Colorblind racism
-School-to-Prison Pipeline
-Police brutality
-Immigrant and Immigration Policy 

Open Educational Resources in Ethnic Studies

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