Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.


This guide is designed to support RSU Students in the sociology major and taking sociology classes.

Web Resources for Sociology - Free & Open Access

  • American Sociological Association - The official site for the American Sociological Association features links to websites for scholarly journals and career information.

  • Institute for Research on Poverty - The Institute of Research on Poverty was founded with the objective of identifying the root causes of poverty and economic inequity in the U.S. 

  • Society for the Study of Social Problems -  Founded in 1951, it is a community made up of researchers, practitioners, and students committed to the study of sociological problems.

  • Directory of Open Access Journals - Select Social Science from the Subject Tree

  • The Socjournal - Socjournal was founded in 2010 with the objective of making the discipline of sociology accessible to the world, and features columns, blogspace, and scholarly articles.

  • National Criminal Justice Reference Service Virtual Library  The NCJRS Virtual Library contains bibliographic information and abstracts of more than 230,000 collection resources and over 80,000 online materials, including all known Office of Justice Program works.

  • Bureau of Justice Statistics  As part of the Office of Justice programs, the BJS strives to collect, analyze, publish, and disseminate information on crime, criminal offenders, victims of crime, and the operation of justice systems at all levels of government. These data are critical to federal, state, and local policymakers in combating crime and ensuring that justice is both efficient and evenhanded.

  • Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics  The Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics brings together data from more than 100 published and unpublished sources about many aspects of criminal justice in the United States. Since 1973, the project has been located at the University at Albany, School of Criminal Justice, and compiled and managed by staff at the Hindelang Criminal Justice Research Center in Albany, New York.

  • Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice  The CJCJ is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization whose mission is to reduce society’s reliance on incarceration as a solution to social problems. The CJCJ provides direct services, technical assistance, and policy analysis that work in unison to promote a balanced and humane criminal justice system designed to reduce incarceration and enhance long-term public safety.

  • American Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section  The Criminal Justice Section has primary responsibility for the American Bar Association's work on solutions to issues involving crime, criminal law, and the administration of criminal and juvenile justice. The Section plays an active leadership role in bringing the views of the ABA to the attention of federal and state courts, Congress, and other federal and state judicial, legislative, and executive policy-making bodies. The Section also serves as a resource to its members on issues in the forefront of change in the criminal justice arena.

  • National Archive of Criminal Justice Data   The mission of the NACJD is to facilitate research in criminal justice and criminology, through the preservation, enhancement, and sharing of computerized data resources; through the production of original research based on archived data; and through specialized training workshops in quantitative analysis of crime and justice data..

  • United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime  The UNODC identifies, analyzes, and monitors global drugs and transnational organized crime threats. On their website, you can find World Drug Reports, Global Reports on Trafficking in Persons, Global Studies on Homicide, Statistics, Transnational organized crime threat assessments, and more.

  • The Vault: FBI Records/FOIA Library  The Vault is the FBI Records' new FOIA Library, which contains 6,700 documents and other media that have been scanned from paper into digital copies. You can search by keyword or by categories like: Anti-War; Counterterrorism; Foreign Counterintelligence; Fugitives; Gangs Extremist Groups; Gangster Era; Organized Crime; Political Figures Events; Public Corruption; Supreme Court; and Violent Crime.

Evaluating Websites

SIFTing for Information

All of the websites listed on this page are reliable sources of information.  However, this list is not exhaustive, and you may find websites not listed on this page that you want to use for your research.  Keep in mind that it can be difficult to determine the credibility and accuracy of the information on the web. When deciding whether or not to cite a website in your research paper, you will want to apply some of the same general rules that you would use when determining the credibility and appropriateness of any information source. Below is an easy acronym to help you remember the main ways to assess an online source. Click the image to learn tips and tools for SIFTing.

You should also know how to quickly assess the location in which online articles are published. Taking note of the website address suffix: .org, .gov, .edu, .com, .net. See a breakdown here: URL & What it can tell you