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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Native American & Indigenous Studies

A general library research guide for Native American & Indigenous Studies at UMass Amherst.

Anthropology 220: Introduction to Native American Studies

Anthropology 220: Introduction to Native American Studies

About the course: This course is an introduction to the interdisciplinary field of Native Studies. Course content includes the indigenous peoples and cultures of North, South and Central America as well as contemporary cultural expressions, representations, political issues, repatriation and active persistence throughout the ongoing colonization of their homelands.

About this guide: This research guide was prepared by the librarian for Native American Indian Studies, with particular focus on resources that will help students complete their research papers. 

Student Paper Topics

  • Suicide Rates
  • Obesity
  • Food Security in Alaska
  • Zuni Fetishes
  • Cobell V. Salazar Court Case
  • Homelessness
  • Native Americans and the Environment
  • Government Benefits
  • Indigenous Women in Canada (Disappearing)
  • Natives in Mass Media
  • Native Stereotypes
  • The Fashion Industry's Appropriation of Native Culture
  • Multiracial Native Americans
  • Globalization
  • Mascots
  • Mohawk Indians--Life and Culture
  • Native Americans and 9/11
  • Blood Quantum
  • Urban Indians
  • Boarding Schools
  • Casinos
  • Museums and Representation
  • Indigenous Rights

Research Strategies & Tips

Sometimes you need to try different terminology in the same database or catalog, when searching for information on Native Americans. For example:

  • Native American
  • Indigenous
  • American Indian

It is also a good idea to search by the specific tribe or nation as well: For example:

  • Wampanoag
  • Abenaki

Also, use both indigenous as well as Europeanized terms, and use different spellings. For example:

  • Mohawk * Kahniakenhaka * Kanienkehaka
  • Iroquois * Haudenosaunee


Use RefWorks to manage your citations and create your bibliography.


After you've run a search, use the button to retrieve articles or to be taken directly to the Interlibrary Loan request page, so you can order the article, book or video if UMass does not have it available.

Article Databases

Try out these databases. Comment on them too!

Finding Books

person looking at New Books

To find books at UMass, you have two options.

1. Start with the general search box on the library home page,  

  • This catalog gives you access to libraries and collections throughout North America and beyond! It starts with UMass but does not limit you to our catalog.

2. Or, use the Five Colleges Library Catalog.

  • This catalog lets you search in some very specifc ways, for example, by Library of Congress Subject Heading. Be as specific as possible in your searching. Start with a subject search (use keyword if subject yields no results). Search by author, title, subject, keyword, call number, journal title, etc. For materials on a specific subject, enter your term(s) into the Subject or Keyword search boxes. See below for some examples of relevant subject headings in Native American Indian Studies.

The standard subject heading for the whole of native communities in North America is: Indians of North America. Related headings include Indians of Central America and Indians of South America.

Evaluating Websites




Five Criteria for Evaluating Webpages -- OLIN

Evaluating Information -- Johns Hopkins

Worksheet for Evaluating Websites -- Wisconsin

These links give great advice on what questions to ask yourself and what to look for when evaluating information you find on the internet - or anywhere.

Give feedback on library instruction

Fill out this anonymous evaluation form and give us feedback on the library instruction by librarian Isabel Espinal.

Keep your research organized



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

More on using RefWorks...