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FAQs About the Library

1. I am trying to locate a specific document in the Abstracts Database, but cannot find it using the author's name.

You may want to use an abbreviated search for the author's name. Try using only the author's last name. If this search return is large you can reduce it by incorporating search terms in other fields such as the topical subject of the work in the Subject Field or a keyword of the title in the Title Field. This should reduce the number of potential database hits.

2. I am looking for materials on a specific topic. How can I find them?

The best method to locate documents concerning a specific subject would be to use the NCJRS Online Thesaurus. After entering this resource by clicking on the appropriate link you can search for a specific term to use or browse the alphabetical listing of terms. Potential search terms and related terms can be located using this resource and a search of the Abstracts Database can be executed directly from it as well.

3. How can I get materials from your collection?

There are several ways in which you can receive materials from our collection. These are described in detail in the NCJRS Library Tutorial. All of the materials in our collection are available through our Interlibrary Loan (ILL) service, but you will have to contact your local library to have them initiate the loan. In addition to our ILL service, select documents in the collection are available through our Paper Reproduction service. Within the abstract databse record, links to full-text publications are provided when available and clicking on find in a library allows you to discover documents in your local library.

4. What subjects are covered in your collection?

The NCJRS collection covers the broad subject area of criminal justice and its related fields of study. Broad topics such as corrections, law enforcement, drugs and crime, juvenile justice, and crime victims are comprehensively covered. Similarly, more focused subjects within these broad topics are also covered such as technology in law enforcement, domestic violence, drug policy, and juvenile violence. More detailed information about the collection can be located at http://www.ncjrs.gov/tutorial.

5. I have a publication that I think would fit in your collection. Can I donate it or suggest that you have it added to your collection?

Yes, we accept donations to the collection and suggestions for documents. To arrange for a donation or to suggest a document contact the NCJRS Library at library@ncjrs.gov.

6. How often are materials added to your collection? How can I learn about these items?

Materials are added to the NCJRS collection on a daily basis. Roughly 300 new documents are added each month. You can learn of new additions to the collection by visiting our Weekly Accessions List Web page. You may also subscribe to our accession listserve and receive weekly notification of new additions to the NCJRS collection.

7. Where is the NCJRS Library located and can I come visit the collection?

The NCJRS Library is located in Rockville, Maryland, approximately 15 miles from Washington, DC. The library is not open to the public. However, questions, comments, and suggestions may be sent via email or phone at 800-851-3420.

8. What is the NCJRS Library and why is it important?

The NCJRS Library is a federally funded project of the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs. Its primary purpose is to collect and provide public access to criminal justice, juvenile justice, and drug issue information. Consisting of more than 215,000 documents it is one of the largest criminal justice special collections in the world and is used heavily by researchers, practitioners, and policy makers.

9. How do I contact the library?

You may contact the NCJRS Library at library@ncjrs.gov or 800-851-3420.

10. I would like to ask a library-related question. How can I contact your organization?

You may contact the NCJRS Library at library@ncjrs.gov or 800-851-3420.

11. I am having trouble figuring out how to use the NCJRS Abstracts Database and Thesaurus Search. Do you have any kind of instructions?

Detailed instruction for both the NCJRS Abstracts Database and Thesaurus search is available online. It you continue to have problems you may contact the NCJRS Library at library@ncjrs.gov or 800-851-3420.