Contact a Librarian

  • Robin Shapiro
  • Office Hours: by appointment.
  • Office Location: Rock Creek library -- Bldg. 9, room 204
  • Contact Info:

Unwinding the Cucumber Tendril Mystery

How do cucumbers and similar climbing vines use tendrils to "grab" a support?  This video from Science Friday provides interesting answers....

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Biology 101 Lab Worksheets

Need an extra copy of your BI 101 library worksheet?

Databases for Research

BI 112 Enzyme Articles

Need to find articles for the BI 112 Enzyme lab paper?  This YouTube video makes it easy!

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How to find peer-reviewed articles on enzymes through the PCC Library

Databases for Background

Environmental Data -- General

Envirofacts Data Warehouse
An amazing roundup of environmental data from the EPA.

Climate Change: NASA's Eyes on the Earth
How is climate change measured?  What are its effects?  Here's a collection of satellite data, images, and more!

US Fish and Wildlife Service
Find news releases, policy information, wildlife refuges, and much more.

Environmental Data -- Oregon

Oregon's Forest Atlas 2010 online edition
Part of the Oregon Dept. of Forestry's geospatial data resource. Use the Atlas to study climate, wildlife density, fire history, and changes in forest cover through the 20th century.

Common Trees of the Pacific Northwest
A dichotomous key, common and scientific names, and a "Mystery Tree" exercise to practice using the dichotomous key.

Nature of the Northwest
Nature and recreation for Oregon and Washington.

Oregon Coastal Atlas
Provides "background information for different coastal systems, access to interactive mapping, online geospatial analysis tools, and direct download access to various planning and natural resource data sets relating to coastal zone management."

Oregon at the Natural Resources Conservation Service
Quick links to conservation information regarding plants, animals, energy, water, soils and more!

Environmental Controversies

Genetics Links

Agriculture Research Service Plant Genetic Resources Unit
Maintains germplasm of many edible plants, and studies the genetics of edible crops.

Genetics Home Reference
A guide to understanding human genetic conditions.

Genomics at the Dept. of Energy
Founders of the Human Genome Project, now also sequencing microbes.

Genome News Network
News about research and related issues.

Foundations of Classical Genetics
From Electronic Scholarly Publishing, reprints of many older articles and a few books from the earliest years of genetics.

Fun with Genetics

Want to help compare genomes and contribute to research in disease genetics, all while playing a game online?  Take a look at Phylo -- A Human Computing Framework for Comparative Genomics!

Reading (and Writing) Journal Articles

Journal articles are written in a specialized style. When you understand the structure, you'll be able to quickly skim articles to determine which are worth your time to read.  There are a couple of good, short tutorials about journal articles.

Journal articles are generally organized in the IMRaD format: introduction, methods and materials, results, and discussion.  The following resources will help you get the most out of your journal reading and paper writing time.

Purdue University's animated tutorial covers the basics, and lets you select which sections you're interested in.

There are a couple of good YouTube videos available -- a basic introduction to reading scientific journal articles (like the Purdue tutorial) and a more detailed introduction to the 3-pass method of reading journal articles (video of a PowerPoint slide show).

The University of Central Florida Libraries clearly illustrate the connection between journal articles and scholarly conversations.  They explain peer review in their video, "Moving into Discipline Specific Research."

For everything you will ever need to know about writing great lab papers, including the structure of journal articles, the Writing Center at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill has a great scientific reports handout.



Research for Lab Papers

CSE Citations

The website we used in class, which is recommended by Dr. Mueller-Kruse, is the Ohio State University Libraries CSE Style Guide.  When you cite an article from a database, use the format recommended for OHIOLink articles, but use the permalink (or persistent link) provided by the database as the article link.  If you have questions, please stop by the library.

There's more info on finding permalinks in PCC databases.

EasyBib provides a citation generator for CSE that is imperfect, but a good start.  The two things you'll need to double-check are the authors' names (CSE requires that you list all the authors in your citations) and the date should be moved to follow the authors' names.   CSE is a premium feature -- if you're using EasyBib from off-campus, you'll need to set up a login while you're on campus, and use the login from off-campus.

For unusual situations, or if you'd like to know more about CSE, Diana Hacker's guide to CSE is comprehensive and clear, but not in Name-Year format.  The CSE handbook is available in the reference section of the library.

Oregon facts

Oregon Blue Book
comprehensive information from the State of Oregon, including county level information

Oregon Quick Facts

from the U.S. Census Bureau
Oregon Fact Sheets - Food and Agriculture
from the U.S. Department of Agriculture
Oregon Employment Statistics 
from the Oregon Employment Department
Oregonian News
from the state’s largest newspaper, includes
Environment Issues

Government and University sites

Air Quality Index - Oregon
from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
- look up environmental data for your neighborhood
from the Environmental Protection Agency
Forest Service - Pacific Northwest Region
from the U.S. Department of Agriculture
Institute for Natural Resources
research on land management from Oregon State University

National Wildlife Refuges in Oregon

from the Fish and Wildlife Service
Nature of the Northwest
Geology and forest information from the USDA and Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries
Oregon Coastal Atlas
tools and data about the Oregon coast
Oregon Climate Service - current and historical Oregon climate data
from Oregon State University 
Oregon Conservation Strategy
from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
Oregon Department of Environmental Quality includes information on water quality, air quality, and waste management
Oregon Explorer
maps, tools and data about Oregon natural resources, from Oregon State University
Oregon Forest Atlas
from the Oregon Department of Forestry

Oregon Sea Grant
from Oregon State University -- coastal science research

Oregon Soil Surveys
from the U.S. Department of Agriculture
Portland Online - Sustainable City
- strategies for green living
from the City of Portland
Web Soil Surveys
from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Oregon plants and animals

Common Trees of the Pacific Northwest
from Oregon State University
Encyclopedia of Life
authoritative free online resource
Endangered Species in Oregon - includes scientific names
from the Department of Fish and Wildlife

Invasive Species in Oregon
from the Oregon Invasive Species Council
Oregon Biodiversity Information Center
from Portland State University
Oregon Explorer Wildlife Viewer - find species in locations
from Oregon State University


City of Portland Planning and Sustainability Bureau
City of Portland Residential Hauler Francise Areas

City of Portland waste studies and reports
Clackamas County Garbage and Recycling
Clark County Garbage and Recycling
Environmental Protection Agency - Municipal Solid Waste
Metro's garbage and recycling transfer centers
Oregon Department of Environmental Quality - Waste Reduction and Pollution Control
Oregon solid waste facilities
Washington County Garbage and Recycling
Videos on garbage and composting:


Surf your watershed - Search by zip code to find your local watershed and information about it from the EPA

Oregon Water Quality Index
from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
Oregon Watersheds
from OSU and other members of the Oregon Watershed Councils
Portland’s Water System
from the Portland Water Bureau
Portland Watersheds
from the City of Portland
Precipitation and temperature data for Oregon counties
from the NRCS National Water and Climate Center

Water Data for the Nation
from the USGS

Oregon books and videos at PCC Library

book cover of Land Mammals of OregonLand Mammals of Oregon
599.09795 V47 1998

Find books and videos on these topics
Oregon atlases
Oregon birds
Oregon mammals
Oregon plants
Oregon trees
Oregon water

Environmental advocacy groups

Defenders of Wildlife,  Northwest Office
focuses on protecting biodiversity and habitat.
Environment Oregon
citizen advocates, with news and reports
Food Alliance
provides sustainability standards for the food and agriculture industry

Oregon Environmental Council
advocates for environmental issues in the Oregon legislature.  Includes 2014 Legislative Agenda.  
Oregon Tilth
nonprofit dedicated to biologically-sound agriculture
Salmon Safe
certifies farms and urban lands in the Northwest as Salmon Safe
Sustainable Northwest
works to restore ecosystems in Oregon through community partnerships

Get Help in Person or by Phone

Getting help with the library catalog

You can ask our librarians a question during open hours at any PCC Library.



Need the phone number for your campus? Contact us! If you'd rather come by in person, check the PCC Library locations and hours.

Chat or Text a Librarian for Help

You can chat with a PCC librarian any time you see the PCC Ask A Librarian chat widget on any of the library's pages (like the PCC Library home page) or in a subject guide like this one. You can also get to us through AIM, Yahoo!, or Google Talk.

Chat balloonsAIM/Y!: pcclib
Google Talk: pcclib@gmail

Green checkmarkYou can also text a librarian for help at:
971-259-TEXT (8398)

Clock Need help when the library isn't open? Chat with an Answerland librarian 24-7.


Email Us


Need to ask a question by email? That's easy too. Use Ask a Librarian, or find your favorite librarian's email address on Library Staff.

Helping Yourself!

Group of studentsPCC Library has lots of resources that you can use on your own. You may already know that about the quiet study spaces as well as study rooms you can reserve.

StarCiting sources is another way you can help yourself! PCC Library has all the information you need on Cite Sources. The library also has video tutorials on everything from how to develop a topic for your paper to figuring out how to incorporate those citations. You'll find those videos, as well as information about using e-resources, at Tutorials and Handouts.

Help from Tutors

Tutors are available to you both in person and online, and the service is free! Cascade, Sylvania, Rock Creek and Southeast Center each have a tutoring center with excellent in-person tutors in most subjects. If you're working on a paper, the writing tutors are popular (so don't wait until the last minute)! You can get more information about each campuses hours and locations at the links below:

Cascade Campus Learning Center

Rock Creek Student Learning Center

Tutoring at Southeast Center

Tutoring at Sylvania

Or get started working with PCC's online tutors:

eTutoring at PCC

Related Research Guides

Related Class Pages

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