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Articles chop up your topic into little, narrow questions. If you find 5 articles, each presenting a narrow study, it's often hard to see how they fit together and what question they are all trying to answer. But encyclopedias and handbooks
- Give you overviews of your topic
- Lead you to the important questions asked by researchers.
- Contain articles written by experts in their fields.
- Put your idea or question into a historical, research, or social context.
- Lead you to further references.
Annual Reviews on Personality
Annual Reviews have great overviews, long literature reviews, on general topics in psychology and clinical psychology.
- Find new topics.
- Get great references.
- See what the field is interested in.
- See where gaps are in the research.
Want to find overviews in personality? Here's my blog post on searching in Annual Reviews.
Elsevier Dictionary of Psychological Theories by
Describes psychological theories in all fields of psychology -- statistical, family therapy, personality, etc. The preface states that the book contains both good and "not so good" theories, expecting the descriptions to aid the reader in deciding which type of theory is encountered. Includes references to the original proposals and to later analyses and reviews.
Encyclopedias and Handbooks