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Earth & Environmental Sciences: EARTH 121

This guide provides help with creating searches; provides sources for books, articles, & data. It also provides contact information for help with finding & using information sources.


This Library guide specifically supports EARTH 121, and has been designed to help students locate, use, and cite, high-quality information as part of learning Earth and Environmental Sciences.  This guide is intended as an introduction, and if you ever have questions about using this guide or where to start looking for information, please feel welcome to email Ryan using the link in his profile below.  Ryan is always happy to help, and is available to answer questions via email, or by meeting in person or on MS Teams.

Before beginning your search for information, it is important to understand the assignment instructions and rubric criteria, to understand your professors' expectations.  This will help you determine what you are looking for, and where you should search.  Your assignment instructions can be accessed through EARTH 121 in LEARN by clicking "Content" on the course navigation bar, and then "Assessments" from the "Table of Contents" menu. The resources provided in this guide will be particularly relevant to the Study Site Assessment.

Reference material: Learning definitions of terms and concepts

Reference materials such as encyclopedias and dictionaries are authoritative sources written by subject matter experts to define important terms and concepts to help you build your foundational knowledge.

Two sources that are great starting points for looking up specialized Earth and Environmental Science terms are:


Key Databases for Earth & Environmental Sciences

Databases contain articles, conference proceedings, and reviews: they are great places to get started on your research!

The Library subscribes to many databases to give you access to academic articles you won't be able to find freely available online.

The following databases are particularly helpful for conducting research in Earth and Environmental Sciences:

Textbook for EARTH 121

The textbook that your instructor(s) have chosen for your course is:

Tarbuck, Lutgens, Tsujita, and Hicock, (2019) Earth: An Introduction to Physical Geology, (Updated 4th Canadian Edition). Pearson.

The Library also has two physical copies available at Davis Centre Library.  Your professors have placed a copy of this book on "Course Reserve", where it has been limited to 2 hour loans to ensure everyone has opportunities to borrow it.

To borrow this item:

  1. Please visit Davis Centre Library.  For those unfamiliar with UWaterloo's campus, our Library is on the main floor of Davis Centre, marked on this campus map as DC.
  2. Your WatCard is also your Library card, make sure you have this with you.  At the Circulation Desk, please ask for the book on Reserve with the call number "QE28.2 .T372 2015", as this is how our books are organized for staff to quickly find them for you.
  3. You can then borrow the book for 2 hours at a time.
  4. If you have any questions, please feel welcome to ask our friendly desk staff as they're always happy to help!


Citing with APA citation style

To be an effective communicator in science and for EARTH 121, your professor has specified that you should learn and use APA citation style for your assignments.

Why citing your sources is important

Using high quality evidence in your research and writing is essential to acting with integrity.  Clearly showing the evidence you've utilized ensures your credibility, the safety of those who depend on your work, and your reputation.  Additionally, by properly citing your sources of information, you situate your work in larger scholarly conversations to demonstrate how your work adds value, and fits within the collective body of knowledge.

Your Librarian

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Ryan Ball
Davis Centre Library
519 888 4567 ext. 42489