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Government Information  

Finding government resources at OSU, including Federal, State, and International, Census and statistical resources, and subject specific information.
Last Updated: Dec 18, 2014 URL: http://guides.library.oregonstate.edu/subject-guide/286-Government-Information Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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In The News

"Torture Report"

GPO Releases The Official Digital & Print Versions Of The Senate CIA Report

The U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) makes available the official and authentic digital and print versions of the Report of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program, together with a forward by Chairman Feinstein and Additional and Minority Views (Senate Report 113-288).

This document comprises the declassified Executive Summary and Findings and Conclusions, including declassified additional and minority views. The full classified report will be maintained by the Committee and has been provided to the Executive Branch for dissemination to all relevant agencies.

The digital version is available on GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys). The print version is available for purchase at GPO’s retail and online bookstore for $29.


GPO Is Now The Government Publishing Office

An agency whose mission has been producing, publishing, and recording our Nation’s history has made some history of its own. Section 1301 of H.R. 83, the legislation providing consolidated and further continuing appropriations for FY 2015 that was recently passed by Congress and signed into law last night by President Barack Obama, changes the name of the Government Printing Office to the Government Publishing Office. Publishing reflects the increasingly prominent role that GPO plays in providing access to Government information in digital formats through the agency's Federal Digital System, apps, eBooks, and related technologies. The information needs of Congress, Federal agencies, and the public have evolved beyond only print and GPO has transformed itself to meet its customers' needs.

Read H.R. 83

"This is a historic day for GPO. Publishing defines a broad range of services that includes print, digital, and future technological advancements. The name Government Publishing Office better reflects the services that GPO currently provides and will provide in the future," said Davita Vance-Cooks, who now holds the title of Director of the Government Publishing Office, the agency's chief executive officer. "I appreciate the efforts of the Members of Congress for their support and understanding GPO’s transformation. GPO will continue to meet the information needs of Congress, Federal agencies, and the public and carry out our mission of Keeping America Informed."

GPO opened its doors on March 4, 1861, the same day Abraham Lincoln was sworn into office as President of the United States. Since that day, GPO employees have produced our country’s most important documents such as the preliminary version of the Emancipation Proclamation, The Warren Commission Report, The 9-11 Commission Report, the U.S. passport, the Federal Budget, and all Congressional materials.

 

Government Information Locations in the Valley Library

Federal and State documents at the Valley Library can be found in a variety of places. The most recent documents are often online only, and can be located with a search of the OSU Libraries catalog; links to these documents are found in the catalog record. Many of our tangible (physical) documents are given a classification number in the Library of Congress (LC) system and located in the regular book stacks with our other items. Others are classified in Superintendent of Documents (SuDoc) classification (or OrDocs in the case of Oregon documents) and are found in the 3rd floor collections (shelves, CD/DVD cases, or microfiche cases). Records for all of them are included in the OSU Libraries online catalog. As you can see, it is essential to note both call numbers and locations in the catalog record.

What is SuDoc? Many of our federal documents are classified in the Library of Congress (LC) classification system and shelved with the other books, but we do have a significant number of documents classified in SuDoc. This is a system that arranges publications by the agency that produced them, NOT by subject like LC. At the Valley Library, these are all located on the 3rd floor. To learn more, please see How to Read Superintendent of Documents (SuDoc) and Oregon Document (OrDocs) Call Numbers from our friends at OIT: http://www.oit.edu/libraries/library/sudocs_ordocs.pdf

Government Documents Services

Reference Service

Help with searching and finding government documents is available at the Information Desk in The Valley Library.  Help via instant messaging, e-mail, text, and phone is available--see Ask Us

Library Instruction

Instruction on finding and using government documents is available for classes and groups and can be tailored to the needs of the students or audience.  Possible topics include

  • finding documents through the OSU Libraries' catalog and the Internet
  • searching government databases
  • becoming familiar with government agencies/offices and their publications
  • governments statistics and how to find them
  • assessing government information and web sites
  • citing government documents

Classes can be scheduled by contacting the Government Information Librarian, Valery King.

Checking Out Documents

Many government documents are available in electronic form, linked in the library catalog or available directly from government databases or the Internet.  The OSU Libraries has a large collection of circulating documents as well.  Many of these are located on the 3rd floor; others are cataloged and shelved within the library stacks. Be sure to check the catalog record to find out what format your document is (paper, microfiche, CD/DVD, online etc.) and the physical location of the document. The table below provides location information and circulation status for documents:

Loan periods for government documents
FormatLocationCirculate?
print / SuDoc number 3rd floor Documents section yes
print / LC call numbers in stacks with other LC call numbers yes
microfiche 3rd floor microfiche cases no
CD-ROM/  DVD-ROM 3rd floor CD cases most do
maps 3rd floor maps cases yes

Locators and Finding Aids

  • OSU Libraries Catalog
    OSU Libraries includes documents (even online documents) in the online catalog. SuDoc and OrDoc numbers can be searched (like call numbers) in the Numbers Search.
  • Catalog of U.S. Government Publications (CGP)
    The CGP is the finding tool for federal publications that includes descriptive records for historical and current publications and provides direct links to those that are available online. Users can search by authoring agency, title, subject, and general key word, or click on "Advanced Search" for more options.
  • THOMAS.gov
    From the Library of Congress. Launched in 1995 as a bipartisan initiative of Congress, THOMAS makes federal legislative information freely available to the public. Includes: Bills, Resolutions / Congressional Record / Presidential Nominations / Treaties / Committee Reports / Video of House and Senate Floor Activity / Links to Congressional information from official and non-official sources
    Covers 1989 (101st Congress) to present.
    Although it is being replaced by CONGRESS.GOV (link below), THOMAS will continue to be available until the transition is complete sometime in late 2014.
  • CONGRESS.GOV
    Congress.gov is the official source for federal legislative information. It replaces the nearly 20-year-old THOMAS.gov site with a system that includes platform mobility, comprehensive information retrieval and user-friendly presentation. It currently includes all data sets available on THOMAS.gov except nominations, treaties and communications. These data sets will be added throughout 2014. Until that time they are still accessible through THOMAS.gov via the link above. THOMAS.gov will be permanently retired by the end of 2014.
  • Digitization Projects Registry
    Contains records of publicly accessible collections that include significant numbers of digitized copies of U.S. Government publications. OSU contributed the U.S. Forest Service Research Legacy
  • FedWorld.gov
    A gateway to government information, managed by the National Technical Information Service (NTIS)
  • CyberCemetary  
      
    Provides permanent public access to the Web sites and publications of defunct U.S. government agencies and commissions. Very useful when presidential administrations change.
  • United States Government Manual
    Official handbook of the Federal Government. Provides comprehensive information on the agencies of the legislative, judicial, and executive branches, as well as quasi-official agencies, boards, commissions, and committees.
  • Browse Topics
    Browse Topics is a resource designed to be the pathway to any publicly-accessible, Government information. Maintained by volunteer librarians, Browse Topics helps the public locate data, conduct research, and learn about various government Web sites.
  • Cross Agency Portals
    Special government websites with information on a particular topic.
  • Checklist of United States Public Documents, 1789-1909
    A digitization of a standard historical reference work. Lists Agency and Congressional documents, including Serial Set.
  • DTIC Online
    Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) serves the DoD community as the largest central resource for DoD and government-funded scientific, technical, engineering, and business related information available (full text available)
  • GovSpeak: A Guide to U.S. Government Acronyms & Abbreviations
    From UC San Diego, the most thorough site for locating government acronyms. The site not only lists the acronyms of hundreds of government departments, agencies and programs, it also links to their websites.
 

FDsys

FDsyslogo

FDsys has replaced GPOAccess as the primary public access to Government information submitted by Congress and Federal agencies. Featured collections include Code of Federal Regulations; United States Code; Federal Register; Congressional Bills, Documents, Hearings and Reports; Congressional Record; Compilation of Presidential Documents; Economic Indicators; Public and Private Laws.

FDsys is easy to use, but there are several robust help documents available. There is a User Manual (in pdf, download from http://www.gpo.gov/help/fdsys_user_manual.htm), and searchable online help is available throughout.

 

Find Your Legislators

Oregon2012 delegation

U.S. Senate

Senator Ron Wyden (D)
Senator Jeff Merkley (D)

U.S. House of Representatives

District 01 Suzanne Bonamici (D)
District 02 Greg Walden (R)
District 03 Earl Blumenauer (D)
District 04 Peter A. DeFazio (D)
District 05 Kurt Schrader (D)

 

Oregon Congressional Districts  (map from the Oregon Blue Book)

State Senators & Representatives: Find Your Legislator at http://www.leg.state.or.us/findlegsltr/home.htm

Redistricting: The Oregon Legislature and the governor approved the Congressional redistricting plan on June 30, 2011. Visit the website to see the changes: http://www.leg.state.or.us/redistricting/

Subject Guide

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Valery King
Contact Info
The Valley Library
541-737-7318
Send Email
 

Citing Government Information

Electronic resources:

Citing Government Documents: American Psychological Association (University of Nebraska Kearney)

Citing Government Information Sources Using MLA (Modern Language Association) Style (Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center, Univ. of Nevada, Reno)

DocsCite (Arizona State University Libraries) helps with both MLA and APA styles.

Print resource:

The Bluebook: a uniform system of citation. Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard Law Review Association. Valley Reference Desk KF245 .B58 2010 (19th edition)

 

Federal Depositories

depository logoThe Valley Library at OSU is a congressionally designated depository for U.S. Government documents. Public access to the government documents collection is guaranteed by public law. (Title 44 United States Code)

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