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Research Guide for MUL 2110: Survey of Music Literature

Getting started on your research

Welcome! I hope this guide will get your music research off to a good start.

  • Oxford Music Online is an incredible resource.  What can you expect to find? By limiting your search to Grove Music articles in this resource, you'll find information on:
    • composers (e.g. Dufay, Josquin, Monteverdi, Bach)
    • genres (e.g., madrigal, motet, opera)
    • countries (e.g. Italy, Germany, France)
    • stylistic movements or time periods (Ars Subtilior, Notre Dame, concertato)
    • and most of all, you will find bibliographies at the end of most articles that lead you to authoritative writings.
  • the FSU Library Catalog provides information about resources owned by the FSU Libraries. However, a few shortuts can make your research more efficient:
    • Do a search for a composer's last name (or in the case of Bach, search for "Bach, Johann Sebastian") and change the search from "Anywhere" to "Subject Heading." For example:

  • On your results screen, notice the information on the left hand side. Many choices to refine the search results! One that is particularly helpful is the choice for subjects (and choosing show more to see more choices).

This is particularly helpful for composers (or genres or results in general) with many "hits" in the catalog search.

From here you can see if an item is availalbe, where in the library it is shelved, and the call number (exactly how it's filed on the shelf).

Yes, these call numbers have a specific organizational scheme. For example, composer biographies are assigned call numbers starting with ML410. Bibliographies of composers and thematic catalogs are assigned call numbers starting with ML134. Want to know more about the Library of Congress call number system for music?

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