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Open Educational Resources: GovDocs

Educational materials made freely and legally available on the Internet for anyone to reuse, revise, remix and redistribute.

Why a specific database?

Sometimes Google does not "reach into" a database, or sometimes you only want a specific type of information.  


Try directly searching any of these databases to find relevant government documents for your research. 

SciTechConnect

Homeland Security Digital Library

Welcome to our Newest Federal Database!

Library of Congress Digital Archive

Access online collections: view maps & photographs; read letters, diaries & newspapers; hear personal accounts of events; listen to sound recordings & watch historic films.

USGS National Geological Map Database

Strategies for Using GovDocs for OER

  1. General searches at USA.gov
     
  2. Look for GAO, CRS or CBO reports.
     
  3. Try one of the 4 National Libraries
    1. National Library of Medicine (PUBMED)
    2. National Library of Education (ERIC)
    3. National Agriculture Library (PubAg)
    4. National Transportation Library 
    5. Library of Congress
       
  4. Narrow down to specific Agencies.
    1. ex. USDA  v. National Ag Library v. USDA Economic Research Service
    2.  Some agencies aren't .gov   ex. si.edu, hsdl.org

Federal Documents: USA.gov

As the U.S. government's official web portal, USA.gov makes it easy for the public to get U.S. government information and services on the web.

Congressional Budget Office

Congressional Budget Office (CBO) provides Congress with nonpartisan analysis for economic and budget decisions and with estimates required for the Congressional budget process.

Congressional Research Service Reports

Congressional Research Service is the U.S. Congressional think tank which produces reports on any topic under consideration by Congress. These reports are:

  • Hard to obtain. They are not made available to members of the public by CRS, except in certain circumstances.

  • Objective reports produced for committees in congress to analyze issues.

  • Widely regarded as in depth, accurate, objective, and timely.

  • Excellent resources for legislative or public policy research.

Finding CRS Reports

There are a variety of institutions, organizations and websites that are publishing CRS Reports.  Try the links listed below.

Government Accountability Office Reports

The GAO is a government agency that provides auditing, evaluation, and investigative services for the United States Congress. The are the "Watch Dog" of federal government.  GAO reports are:

  • Easily available
  • Objective, fact-based, nonpartisan, nonideological, fair, and balanced
  • Tend to be longer, more indepth and more critical than CRS reports.  
  • Full of useful charts and statistics.  

  • Might be one particular aspect of a policy/law.  

  • Makes a recommendation regarding the policy.

GOA Search