Get Schooled on the Electoral College!

GET SCHOOLED ON THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE!

Electoral College Map
Electoral College Map

What do Presidents John Quincy Adams, Rutherford B. Hayes, Benjamin Harrison, and George W. Bush have in common?  None of them won the popular vote during their respective presidential elections.  However, the most “popular” person (a.k.a the person with the most votes) doesn’t always win.

For some of you, this may be your first time to vote in a presidential election.  Maybe you’ve heard the term “Electoral College” but have no idea what it means. The United States Electoral College is the establishment that elects the President. The Electoral College consists of 538 electors from the fifty states and Washington, D.C.  A majority of 270 votes must be received by a candidate in order to win the presidency.

The Electoral College was established to make sure that the voters in the smaller states have a voice.  Also, it prevents a candidate with only regional appeal from winning.  The Electoral College is not without controversy.  Some pundits feel that the United States should go to a system of a direct popular vote.  Others say a change would hurt the less populated areas.  What do you think? As always,  before voicing your opinion, we encourage you to do your research! School yourself on the Electoral College by researching the topic before you start a conversation at the family dinner table.

Thigpen Library has plenty of resources. We recommend starting with the Credo Reference DatabaseIssues and Controversies in American History Database or the books listed below.

Securing Democracy:  Why We Have an Electoral College (JK 1976 .S43 2001)

Electoral College:  Anachronism or Bulwark of Democracy? (JK 529 .E44 C85 2001)

Image result for securing democracy why we have an electoral college

Database Trial Alert: Statista

The Thigpen Library has a trial subscription from now until mid-February to a database called Statista. To access it, just go to statista.com, and you should see a message at the top left of the page that shows you are accessing it through Volunteer State Community College. If you are off-campus, you will first be prompted to log in with your Vol State username and password before gaining access.

So what kind of information does Statista contain? Statista offers access to over 1 million statistics and over 1,000 industry reports. The statistics range in topic from serious content, like the change of price in gasoline in certain countries over a one year period to more fun information, like the average annual household spending on video games. It is the world’s largest statistics portal, so chances are, if you do not find what you need here, then you may have a tough time finding it anywhere!

Statista also offers Infographics, like the one below, that are frequently updated and used by companies such as CNN, ESPN, and Mashable.

Infographic: The Top 10 Winter Box Office Record Breakers | Statista
One of the many infographics that Statista offers

The resources in Statista can be useful for a wide range of subject areas, including all of the academic divisions at Vol State! All of the content can be exported and embedded into papers, reports, PowerPoint or Google presentations, blog postings, and websites. Statista also has a feature that will help users cite their statistics in four different citation styles.

Still have questions about how to use Statista? Watch the video at the top of the post and learn more tips and tricks!

If you would like to know more about how to best use Statista, or you have feedback about it for the library, please contact Amber McKee at 615-230-3406 or by email.

Discover the Library

“Your number #1 campus resource is the Thigpen Library”.  In addition to the Gallatin campus, library services are available at the Highland Crest, Livingston and McGavock sites.  Whichever campus you are attending, visit the library, meet the librarians, and discover the library services available to you.  Research assistance is available at each location.  If you’re attending classes at an off-campus site, you can request materials from the Thigpen Library be sent to your site for you.

The Thigpen Library will be offering several workshops this semester.  Information about the workshops and the schedule are available at libguides.volstate.edu/workshops

 

The ins and outs of library databases

Databases – huh? is a 20 minute Learn@the Library workshop which meets on Tuesday Sep. 21 and introduces you to the the basics of using the library’s databases. Databases are THE source of articles from magazines and journals; this is good stuff to know. Your professor expects you to use these information resources so come by on Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. in the Library’s Rosemary Rogers Research Center.

As a bonus  two Vol State t-shirts will be given away.