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LING 319: Historical Linguistics

This is a companion guide to the Library research session for Dr. Emanuela Mileva's LING 319 (Historical Linguistics) class, Winter Term 2, 2020.


The databases listed below are core resources for many linguistics assignments and provide examples of typical database features. 

Summon, the search tool on the library homepage, includes the content  virtually all the hundreds of databases available via UBC Library. Summon  searches retrieve large result sets, but Summon lacks limits and filters helpful for linguistics research, e.g. limit by methodology, to human subjects, by sex and age group, etc.

Google Scholar

 To connect to full text articles via UBC eLink (i.e. for free) when you search Google Scholar from off campus, choose any  of the following:

  • Direct to Google Scholar via the Library
  • Navigate to Google Scholar: Library Homepage --> Indexes and Databases --> Google Scholar --> Connect
  • Change the Google Scholar settings  to display UBC eLink. --> Settings -->Library Links --> enter University of British Columbia--> click in tick box(es) --> click Save.

    If no UBC eLink button displays, or if the UBC eLink does not work, try searching for the item via the search box on the library homepage.

When you search Google Scholar, where does the search look for your search terms?
The full text of  many articles, plus author, title, journal title, abstract, author-added keywords, etc.

What's indexed in Google Scholar?
"[T]he full text of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines . . . [including] most peer-reviewed online journals of Europe and America's largest scholarly publishers, plus scholarly books and other non-peer reviewed journals"  (Google Scholar. (n.d.) In Wikipedia. Retrieved September 19, 2013, from

  • No subjects (descriptors), keyword searching only
  • No limits to human subjects, by methodology, etc.
  • An excellent "cited by" feature

Find an article from a citation

Cut and paste the title of the article into the search box on the library homepage:

Mampe B., Friederici A. D., Christophe A., Wermke K. (2009). Newborns’ cry melody is shaped by their native language. Current Biology, 19, 1994–1997.

Very old or very new article may be findable only by a journal title search.

  1. From the library homepage, choose the "Journal Titles" tab
  2. Enter the title of the journal
  3. Follow the links to the article


Key Journals in Historical Linguistics

Historical linguistics: key journals