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Architecture Resources

Guide to architecture resources at UH


Most of UH’s information resources on architecture are housed in the William R. Jenkins Architecture and Art Library, which is located on the first floor of the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design.  Some materials, especially those that focus on engineering and construction, may also be found at the M.D. Anderson Library. 

Architecture is still primarily a print-based field of study, so students are encouraged to browse the considerable book and journal collections in the Jenkins Library, as few are available electronically.  The Jenkins Library staff are experts in architectural research and enjoy assisting students, so stop by for materials, consultation and study space.  

For research assistance or specific questions, email for assistance.  

Research Basics for Architecture

WHAT IS A LIBRARY CATALOG?  It is a database where researchers can locate material that UH Libraries owns or to which it subscribes.  It contains the titles and subjects of books and e-books, dvd's and streaming videos, journals and e-journals, databases and other online research tools.  It cannot be used to search for articles; just for the journals and magazines containing those articles.  Use the library catalog to search for materials that are broad and deep.  

WHAT IS A DATABASE?  A database is a searchable collection of data.  The databases on this guide are packaged by publishers and other vendors and available to UH researchers because the library subscribes to them.  UH researchers need to use the library's websites or catalog to access them, as they are not freely available on the Internet.  Many of the databases found on this guide are focused on a particular subject, such as building materials or maps.  Use databases to search for materials that are focused and specific.  

WHAT ARE PRIMARY MATERIALS?  Primary materials are documents or information-bearing objects that were created at a time period being studied.  Letters, photographs, autobiographies, diaries, and sound or video recordings are all examples of primary materials. Researchers analyze primary sources to create books, papers or other works of scholarship (which, in turn, become SECONDARY sources).  

WHAT FORMATS ARE USED IN ARCHITECTURAL RESEARCH?  Books, journals, videos, building plans, blueprints, sketches, building codes, and photographs are typical materials used when studying and researching architecture.  

WHAT ARCHITECTURAL INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE ONLINE?  As architects, firms and photographers usually retain their copyright on photographs, plans and other building images, few image-intensive architectural resources are available electronically - either on the free web or on purchased platforms.  Students of architecture will more likely find photographs and maps online, but are unlikely to find building graphics like details and axonometric drawings online.