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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Afro American Studies

A general guide to library research in Afro American Studies.

Your Research Guide to Black Springfield Matters

This is your library research guide to AFROAM 297A (#10570)
Black Springfield Matters
An Introduction to New Afrikan Urban Studies
A course taught by Amilcar Shabazz

Thomas Thomas (left) stands in the doorway of his restaurant on Worthington Street with Mrs. Mary Ann Jones Jenkins and Edgar Lee. 
From the Springfield Picture Collection of the Museum of Springfield History, Springfield, MA More at Our Plural History 

Library Guide by Isabel Espinal

Research Tools for Viewing Social Issues via Geography


Policy Map is map-creation tool for visualizing many categories of data: income, housing, quality of life, federal guidelines, and more. Available on campus to all, or off-campus to UMass Amherst students, staff and faculty with an UMass Amherst IT NetID (user name) and password.

Check out this tutorial on creating 3 layer maps:


Similar to PolicyMap, "ArcGIS is a geographic information system (GIS) for working with maps and geographic information. It is used for: creating and using maps; compiling geographic data; analyzing mapped information; sharing and discovering geographic information; using maps and geographic information in a range of applications; and managing geographic information in a database.The system provides an infrastructure for making maps and geographic information available throughout an organization, across a community, and openly on the Web." (Wikipedia) The basic featuers of ArcGIS do not require a UMass account.

Databases for articles, reports and more


Citation Management

Use a citation manager, such as RefWorks to keep track of your research.

Put all your references in RefWorks, create quick and easy bibliographies, build your knowledgebase.


For help on RefWorks, check out the online guides and webinars or Ask a Librarian.

If you're looking for another citation management option to RefWorks, try Zotero.

More Databases


The Boston Public Library (BPL) and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) offer all Massachusetts residents remote access to proprietary databases. This includes historical newspapers, government information, and geneaology sources.

Connect to databases for Massachusetts residents at

Subject Guide

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Isabel Espinal
W.E.B. Du Bois Library
University of Massachusetts

Office hours Wednesdays 3-4:30, room 325, New Africa house. Also available by appointment. I can meet via phone, Zoom, or other online venue. To request an online appointment or get any other help, please email or call:
Website Skype Contact: isabel.espinal2010