Connect with the colleges of Grand Canyon University (GCU) through the GCU Community page. Enjoy a collection of the latest news, events and hot topics that GCU’s Deans, faculty, staff and students have prepared. As an aggregate of the colleges’ blog, you will find an assortment of topics assembled on this community page. Click around and get lost in the engaging content provided by GCU.
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Category: Library

By Denise Gullikson
MLIS, Reference Librarian

Are you confused about how to navigate the library? Do you need helping figuring out what database to use and what search terms to put in the search box? Have questions about peer review or empirical articles? Do you wish you could actually watch how a search is done and have the ability to ask questions at the same time?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then attend a Grand Canyon University Library webinar!

Webinars are a great way to learn how to use different databases and learn how to get help from the GCU Librarians! We can show you how to develop your searches, what key words to use and how to set up a search for peer reviewed articles. Have your questions answered by a librarian in real time as the webinar unfolds!

The Library presents regular webinars that are both general and subject specific and include the following options:

  • Library Introduction
  • Business Resources
  • CWV-101
  • Doctoral Research
  • Education Resources
  • Nursing and Health Sciences Resources
  • RefWorks

To sign up for a webinar, go to http://library.gcu.edu and click on “Webinars and Workshops.” Click on the date and time that works for you!

If you can’t attend a webinar during the times listed, no problem! The GCU Librarians are available for on-demand, one-on-on research consultations during open library hours. Call, email or chat with us!

But you don’t have to take our word for it! Students that have previously attended the GCU Library webinars rave about how informative the webinars are and how much easier their lives are made by spending one short hour watching and listening to general or specific research tips and techniques. You will gain countless hours of your life back! Increase your confidence and the know-how to navigate the library’s resources and get the articles you need for your assignment – sign up today!

If you would like help researching or have other library related questions, please contact us at http://library.gcu.edu/AskALibrarian or call toll free 800-800-9776 x6396641.


By Holly Christman
MLS, Reference Librarian

Here a few reasons why you should hang out at the Grand Canyon University Library.

  1. You can eat, study and meet up with friends.
    Sound too good to be true? It’s not! We encourage students to spend time at the library. Sure, you need to focus on work – that’s why we provide study rooms, work tables and comfy chairs – but, we understand that after all that hard work you may need a snack or a few minutes to catch up with friends. So go ahead, munch over your research, catch up with you BFF’s while writing your paper and when you’re done, stretch out on one of our couches and relax!
  2. We have skeletons in our closets- literally!
    As our biology students probably already know, the GCU Library offers non-traditional materials, namely our boxes of anatomical models. Are you a hands-on learner and need to handle something in order to commit it to heart? Good news! You can check out models of skeletal sections or even a full skeleton on the fourth floor, just inquire at the information desk. Fun fact: each model skull is named after a character in “Hamlet,” pretty cool, right?
  3. Librarians are nice and WANT to help you.
    We hear many students say that they wait to ask for help because they don’t want to “bother” the librarian. GCU librarians are trained professionals who know how to search out articles on many topics. Our job is to support YOU and we love our jobs! So, the next time you hit a wall in your research, just ask for a librarian and you’ll get one with a smile.
  4. Cool talks and events
    The library is home to lectures, exhibits and events throughout the year. They are the best kept secret on campus. We host guest speakers, traveling exhibits and showcase banned books plus much more. Check it out sometime, you could be part of something really special at your campus library!
  5. Resources, resources, resources!!!
    Everyone knows that the best reason to hang out at the library is to find information. We have print books, eBooks, journals, DVDs, computers, printers, Wi-Fi, group study rooms, library instruction classes and expert librarians. At the GCU Library, you can get all your work done, learn a new skill or just check out a DVD for movie night.
  6. The View
    The GCU Library has a spectacular panoramic view of the campus grounds and surrounding area. Want to feel as though you are standing on top of a mountain in the sunshine, but still have a Wi-Fi connection for your tablet or laptop? We have you covered. The picturesque view from the library will have you stopping to take it all in.

There are a lot of reasons why hanging out at the library is cool. But, don’t take our word for it. Drop by and see for yourself what the GCU Library has to offer.


By Dana Shreve
MLIS, MS, Reference Manager
and Ashley Duncan, MLIS, Reference Librarian

You will find that your GCU assignments require you to use the Grand Canyon University Library. Why? You know how to use Google, right? Put in your topic in the search bar and BAM! Websites by the millions! You might even use Google Scholar, just to refine the search to articles instead of websites. So, why isn’t that good enough for your assignment?

Here a just a few reasons why the GCU Library has what you need:

Free Full Text Articles
The library has 99 databases and millions of journal articles free for you to use. If you were to continue to search on Google, they may request that you pay for an article.

Different Types of Articles
Need to have an article that is peer reviewed or scholarly or research based? Well, you can’t sort your results by those types in Google or Google Scholar. In the library databases, you have options to limit and filter your results to what the assignment requirements are.

Thousands of eBooks
The library has over 150,000 of eBooks available for use 24/7. To view the library catalog (LopeCat), click on ‘Find Books & More,’ Enter your topic and click search.

Experts in Finding Information
There is a staff of reference librarians with their masters degrees here for you, ready to answer any question you may have. They are experts in finding information. Let them help you choose the best database and keywords for your research question.

There is a librarian available seven days a week

  • Contact by phone: Monday-Friday: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday: 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
    • Toll free 1.800.800.9776 ext. 6396641
  • You can chat with us Monday-Friday: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • You can email us 24/7
  • You can come to the library, third and fourth floors of the Student Union: Monday-Thursday: 7 a.m.-12 a.m., Friday: 7 a.m.-10 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sunday: 10 a.m.-12 p.m.

Citation Creation
Not only do the library databases help with creating your references in APA, MLA or Turabian, but so can the librarians. Need to cite a webpage, interview, line from a movie? No problem! View the citing sources guide by going to http://library.gcu.edu and click on ‘Citation Guidelines’ from the left menu.

A Rule to Remember
If you spend more than 15-20 minutes searching, stop and give us a call; we’re happy to help you with any question you may have!


By Holly Christman
MLS, Reference Librarian

The benefits of going to school online include flexible schedules, little to no transportation costs and being able to do you work in your pajamas at 3 a.m.

That being said, there are some challenges to being an online student. So, how do you get the most out of your college experience when you may never set foot on campus? Here are a few tips to help you survive and thrive in an online environment.

  1. Get Familiar with the Library’s Online Resources!
    Just because you can’t walk into the GCU Library doesn’t mean we don’t have tons of terrific resources for you! As an online student, your digital resources are going to be absolutely pivotal to your success and the library has you covered from scholarly journal articles, eBooks and APA citation guidelines to help from a real librarian via email, chat or phone. And the best part is that the Library’s electronic resources are available 365/24/7! If you need assistance using any online resource, contact the library or sign up for a webinar!
  2. Know Your Syllabus
    The announcement section in your online classroom is great and we know your assignments are what you really want to focus on, but the syllabus is the master list of everything your instructor wants your class to review. Here you will find the course textbook, important links, rubrics for assignments, additional digital materials for the class and your assignments. You can get to the syllabus under the ‘resources’ tab once you are logged into the class.
  3. It’s Okay to Ask for Help
    Contact your instructor, your academic counselor, the library or the tutoring center immediately if you aren’t clear on the instructions for an assignment. Student support is our top priority at GCU! If you ask for assistance right away, you’ll be able to get clarification on the assignment and still have plenty of time to do the work.
  4. Get Organized
    Think you don’t have to take notes because you’re not in class? Think again! Your online classroom still has lectures and other course materials that you are responsible for knowing, responding to or incorporating into your work. So get organized! Take notes on journal articles you read, mark due dates on your personal calendar and keep all downloads and documents saved, organized and clearly labeled so you can be ready to reference them at anytime.
  5. Don’t Get Discouraged!
    As an online student, you have responsibilities that traditional students may not have, which may include a family or a full time job. You are accountable for keeping yourself motivated, on task, meeting regular deadlines and participating in class.  It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with all that going on. Just remember to think about how much you’ve accomplished so far and that you can do anything!

By Kelly O’Neill
MLIS, Reference Librarian

Have you seen our research guides yet? The Grand Canyon University Library’s collection of research guides cover a variety of subject-specific and general topics that will help you become a successful researcher.

Research guides are perfect for students who…

  • Are new or returning to school
  • Need a little help getting started
  • Wants tips for finding information within their subject area
  • Need help with citations and formatting
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By Holly Christman
MLS, Reference Librarian

Imagine this scenario: You did your research yesterday and found the perfect article for your paper. Today, you have time to read this perfect article in detail, but you didn’t save it!

You try to retrace your steps: sign in to a library database, enter keywords, click ‘search.’ Nope, can’t find the article in the results page. Choose another database, same keywords, click ‘search.’ Review the results. Still not there! Alas, you can’t find the article! What to do? Contact the library at http://library.gcu.edu/AskALibrarian or call 602-639-6641 (toll free 800-800-9776 x6396641) and we can help you retrieve the article.

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By Charles Seymour
PhD, MLS, Reference Librarian

Are you researching a topic in computer science? The Grand Canyon University Library has recently strengthened its holdings in this field with the addition of four databases. You can find these new additions on the “Find Journal Articles” button on the library’s website. Browse by alphabetical listings or find the new database additions under the “Computer Science” subject heading.

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By Holly Christman
MLS, Reference Librarian

When searching one of Grand Canyon University Library’s many fabulous databases, did you ever notice the small boxes labeled “AND” and wonder, “What am I supposed to do with those?”

Those are Boolean Operators and they can be a very effective tool when doing your online research. By using Boolean Operators, you can change the way the database searches for information by telling it what kind of information you want included in your results.

The Boolean operators are: AND, OR and NOT

They work like this…

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