ACRL

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Internet Reviews

Sara Amato, editor

Sara Amato is automated systems librarian at Central Washington University; samato@tahoma.cwu.edu

Parliamentary and Presidential Elections around the World.

ACCESS :http:// www.geocities.com/ ~derksen/election.htm.

Parliamentary and Presidential Elections around the World, edited by Dutch journalist Wilfried Derksen, provides current election information including the political composition of the representative assemblies throughout the world.

Parliamentary and Presidential Elections around the World appears in both frame and nonframe versions. The main page contains links to the election databases, a listing of Web sites for political parties and parliaments, and an international election calendar. Also available is a lexicon of liberal ideas and terms, a bibliography of liberal materials, and a list of liberal Web sites.

The election database contains links to country information plus introductory and supplementary information. Entries contain basic political data for all independent countries, political entities recognized by international organizations as holding political status but not presently recognized by other countries (Palestine and Sahara are examples), autonomous overseas dependencies, and the European Union. Also included are links to a detailed election calendar listing elections from 1990 into 1998, an election index covering the same period, up-to-date election news, and links to related Web political databases.

Election information for individual countries appears by geographical area and in alphabetical order by name of political unit. Independent countries are identified by bold print links; dependencies have lighter print links. Entries for individual political units contains the official name of the country, geographical size, population, and the capital. Recent political results appear for both executive branches and legislative bodies. Information for the executive includes name of the office holder and terms of office. For the parliaments, the results for the most current election, listing of parties, and number of seats held by each party appear. Entries close with links to Web pages to the political parties, executives, and parliaments. Links to other Web-based sources, such as the CIA World Fact Book, also appear. Those countries with monarchies, dictatorships, or single-party governments are identified as such. Also included is detailed information on the makeup of the European Union.

Parliamentary and Presidential Elections around the World complements and updates standard print sources such as Europa Year Book and Statesman’s Year-Book. Patrons will find this site invaluable for research and remaining current on political structures in other countries. All academic libraries will benefit from this source.—Stephen L. Hupp, University of Pittsburgh of Johnstown; sh upp+@pitt. edu

National Center for Education Statistics—Data and Surveys. ACCESS:http: //www.ed.gov/NCES/surveys/ datasurv.html.

National Center for Education Statistics Data and Surveys Web site provides data from the following seven areas of study: Elementary/ Secondary Surveys; Postsecondary Surveys; Longitudinal Surveys; Education Assessments; Libraries; International Comparisons; and information from the School District Data Book.

Links to each of these areas provide the reader with a synopsis of the study and a contact person from whom interested individuals may receive more information about the research. Seven of the surveys can be used with the Data Analysis System (DAS), a Windows software tool that allows access to Department of Education survey data. The DAS generates tables specified by users who “tag” row and column variables of interest to them. The DAS is available at the following Web site: http:// www.pedar-das.org/htm/about.htm.

This site is archival, with data dating as far back as 1972; the bulk of information on this site, however, dates from the mid-1980s forward.

This site is useful for librarians serving schools with undergraduate and graduate programs in education and for researchers whose focus is education. Those interested in research covering financial aid will also find this site useful for its coverage of the National Postsecondary Students Aid Study (NPSAS), which contains data for academic years 1986-87, 1989-90, and 1992-93. The Libraries section presents data on academic, public, school, and state library agencies.

Attempts to contact this site’s Webmaster to determine future plans for the site were unsuccessful.—Timothy E. McMahon, Metrowest Massachusetts Regional Library System; tmcmahon@simmons.edu

The Medieval Feminist Index: Scholarship on Women, Sexuality, and Gender. ACCESS:http://www.haverford.edu/ library/reference/mschaus/mfi/mfi.html.

This index concentrates on articles, and essays in books, as well as book reviews. The time period included covers the years 450 C.E. to 1500 C.E. The index is compiled by a combination of volunteers, including librarians, scholars, and a student assistant. Since the project began only within the past year, they are concentrating on indexing current materials before moving to back issues. The purpose is to provide access for women’s studies scholars to the exponentially increasing volume of materials that are becoming available. The reviewed journals come from various disciplines, including “Art History, Literature, Music, History of Science and Medicine, and Religion.” The geographic area of study is Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa.

The search form is very clear and allows for multiple search combinations: author, title, subject heading, or source, as well as by article type and language. Publications in English, French, and German are currently included. One cannot combine multiple subject terms, nor use word variations. A subject headings list and a broad topics list are available from the search form page. However, if one chooses not to consult the subject list, if the term is not used a button to link to holdings with the correct term will appear in the search results.

The main page includes a link to the list of 328 journal titles that are being indexed, as well as a link to the list of essay collections. The journal list includes the dates and volume numbers for issues that have been indexed. Because the index does not include individual works, the compilers point users to selected library catalogs that have significant collections in medieval studies. An additional feature is the identification of primary sources.

Overall, the database is well laid out. One limitation is that book reviews do not include subject fields. If one does a subject search, one must do a separate keyword title search as well to come up with possibly relevant book reviews in addition to the references to articles in the current database. One additional feature of the database is that it does provide links to other Web resources for medieval women.

In conclusion, Margaret Schaus, coordinator of the Medieval Feminist Index, and her volunteers should be commended for a well-developed site. It should become an outstanding resource for feminist scholars and medieval scholars, as well as an example of how a well-developed database should be done. Commercial vendors should take note!—Teresa Fishel, Macalester College; fishel@macalester.edu

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