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Spring 2021: Sherrill and Moriarty Library are closed as part of the Lesley University COVID-19 response.  Please visit us online through our library website and via our Ask-A-Librarian service,and see our Remote Services Guide.

MFA Visual Art Research

A research guide created for students in the MFA program at Lesley University College of Art and Design.

Step One

Think about how you'll keep track of important websites, for example a Google doc with links or a bookmarks folder in your web browser.

To access all your Critical Theory readings in the Blackboard community, just log into and click "my community"

Find the "MFA in Visual Arts Student Community" and then click Critical Theory: Readings and Syllabi in the lefthand menu.

Step Two

Explore this guide using the menu to the left (or on mobile, it will be up top). You'll find:

  • Resources: Whether you want to explore a topic or search for a specific book/article the library's @LL Search tool will sift through almost all of the databases we subscribe to at once (including art journals, magazines, eBooks, and streaming video)
  • Citation Help: This program uses MLA citation style, use this tab for formatting guides and examples
  • Research & Writing Help: Tips for the writing and brainstorming process
  • Group 3: Get a sneak peek at what we'll go over when you're in group 3, but don't let anything intimidate you. Ending up with a completed thesis in a couple years seems impossible to most people when they first start out but everyone gets there in the end!

At the top of the page, under the Lesley University Library heading (on mobile look for the menu button undefined), there are dropdown menus for even more resources.  This guide is a curated list of resources just for you, but the green menu at the top has all the other library resources.  Feel free to browse around, but for now make sure you check out:

  • Help > Research Help which has our contact info! You can also use the chat button anywhere you see it (like the homepage of this guide or under the menu on the left)


Step Three

These are the accounts you have to create with the companies that make the tools:

  • Artstor lets you find very high-quality scans of artwork throughout history. To set up your account click Log In and choose Lesley University from the dropdown list of schools.
  • Register your Inter-Library Loan account. This is how you'll request articles or book chapters if Lesley doesn't have them.

@LL Search Tutorials

1) Basics of setting up a search and finding articles/eBooks

Artstor Tutorials

1) Register your Artstor account (turn on sound or subtitles)


2) Using Artstor (first, register your account using the instructions in the video above)

Other Artstor tutorials can be found here:

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