Think about your specific communication theory and the name(s) of the developer of the theory.
Remember during your research that many of communication theories have been borrowed or based on theories from other fields of study such as education, business, psychology, anthropology, and many more.
Look up your theory in your textbook, then move on to other library sources.
The Reserve Room is located on the second floor of the library, room LB210.
Browse the communication books in the Speech cart.
Look up your theory in the Table of Contents, or in the Index.
A First Look at Communication Theory
Handbook of Interpersonal Communication
Engaging Theories in Interpersonal Communication
Located on the third floor of the library.
Look up your theory in the Index. (The index is usually last volume of the set.)
Encyclopedia of Communication and Information P87.5 E53 2002
Encyclopedia of Communication Theory REF P87.5 E496 2009
Encyclopedia of Human Behavior, 4 vols. REF BF31 .E5 1994
Encyclopedia of Psychology, 8 vols. REF BF31 .E52 2000
International Encyclopedia of Communications, 4 vols. REF P87.5 .I5 1989
List possible search keywords (terms or phrases that best represent your theory).
Initially, omit the word "theory" or "communication."
name of your theory
name of the theorist(s)
alternative name of the theory (if any)
related keywords that describe the focus of your theory
Not enough results?
Try alternative or related names for your theory.
Instead of the name of your theory, try terms or phrases that describe the concept of your theory.
Too many results?
Add the terms "theory" or "communication" to your search string.
Name of theory. First, omit the word theory. Then, add it only if initial search results bring up too many unrelated articles.
Name of person. Use the name of the author connected with the theory.
Combine terms with and.
delia and cognitive and dissonance
sherif and social and judgment
hierarchy and needs and Maslow
acquired needs and mcclelland or try mcclelland and motivation
social information procession or try computer mediated communication
Find journal articles.
Use your 14-digit library barcode number for off-campus access (the number is on the back of your student ID). Don't have an ID? Get one from the library. Distance students can fill out the online request form.