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UMW Libraries
Simpson Library | Special Collections

LING 470S: Endangered Languages: Secondary sources (scholarly analysis)


The Quest logo (a Q wearing a wizard hat)

Use Quest to find books, including both e-books and print books.


Items in Quest are tagged with subject terms that tell you what each item is about. Search for a subject term to find all the items tagged with that term. Here are some examples to get you started:

  • Endangered languages.
  • Language and languages—Variation.
  • Language attrition.
  • Language maintenance.
  • Language obsolescence.
  • Language revival.
  • Linguistic change.
  • Linguistic minorities.
  • Sociolinguistics.

You might also find a subject term for a particular language, such as "Maori language," or a language family, such as "Austronesian languages."

I also recommend browsing our books about endangered languages. There's a whole shelf of them in the stacks on the second floor, at P 40.5. Check the index of each book to see whether it covers your topic.

Articles in databases

You can use Quest to find articles. It's a good starting place. However, don't stop with just Quest!

One problem with Quest is that, while articles in Quest are tagged with subject terms, articles' subject terms are not standardized the way that books' subject terms are standardized. This is because each of our 200+ databases uses its own terminology, and Quest pulls its info from the databases.

Therefore, search these databases one at a time, and make sure you're using each database's terminology. I'll show you how to use the Thesaurus feature to find the correct terms.

Interlibrary Loan

As you read, you'll see citations to other sources, and you'll want to find and read these other sources yourself. UMW will have some, but not all, of the sources you look for. If UMW doesn't have a particular source that you want, request it from another library via Interlibrary Loan (ILL).

ILL is a free service. Articles are delivered electronically, usually within three business days. You can also request scanned chapters from books for electronic delivery, or entire books for physical delivery to Simpson Library. Physical delivery usually takes 1-2 weeks.

For more information, or to make an ILL request, click here.