Help


What am I searching?

Through the Portal to Jesuit Studies, you have access to sources related to the history, the spirituality, the educational heritage, and the academic study of the Society of Jesus. These sources are located at disparate websites, but their contents are all available through the Portal’s aggregate search engine.

What you have with the Portal is free access to a variety of online materials, with the contents curated and integrated to assist with your research, classroom work, and general exploration to deepen your understanding and appreciation of the Society of Jesus.

Other often-asked questions include:

What can I do with the Portal?

What can I search through the Portal?

How can I modify my searches?

How can I improve the Portal?

With additional questions, please contact the Portal’s editors (jesuitportal@bc.edu).

 

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What can I do with the Portal?

First, you can search the contents of disparate websites through a single search engine. The Portal sorts your search results by sources and directs you to the source you desire.

Second, you can browse the Portal’s internal content, exploring the Essential Documents and downloading individual materials for your private use (research and in the classroom).

Third, you can stay current with developments in the academic study of the Society of Jesus: the prominent forthcoming publications, conferences, and other programming. You can browse the listing of these developments (and you may contribute news via jesuitportal@bc.edu). The site’s news listings are aggregated into the Portal’s search results. You can also follow the Portal’s twitter account (@jesuitportal).

 

What can I search through the Portal?

In general, you are searching two types of content through the Portal: research tools and recent scholarship.

The research tools include a variety of sources, from selected historical documents to bibliographic records and from historiographical essays to full texts of historical volumes. Recent publications feature titles from Jesuit Sources and the contents of the Journal of Jesuit Studies. Selected presentations from the International Symposia on Jesuit Studies will be available for searching soon.

Learn more about the sources currently searchable here.

Additional sources (both internal to the Portal and external) are forthcoming. Operators of relevant websites are encouraged to contact the Portal’s editors to explore how to integrate content into the Portal’s search engine.

 

How can I modify my searches?

You may limit your search through the Portal’s advanced search. The advanced search allows you to search for a term that appears in the title (of a book, chapter, article, or document). You may also limit your search by a desired author, editor, or translator. Data ranges can be specified as well (looking for results before a certain date, or after one, or between two years). Lastly, the advanced search will soon allow you to limit your search by multiple sources. For now, though, you can get results by a single source. The Portal’s editors welcome suggestions on what other modifiers would be helpful to your searches (jesuitportal@bc.edu).

Within the advanced or regular search, you can also limit your searches to exact terms by using quotation marks (e.g.,John Courtney Murray”). Please note: A search with multiple terms without quotation marks (e.g., John Courtney Murray) will yield results for any of the terms (e.g., those with all three names or those with just John). The search, however, will prioritize results that contain the most number of terms.

Further refinement is available at the sources themselves. For example, the Online Library offers its own advanced search and other modifying elements. The Boston College Jesuit Bibliography allows for searching and browsing by subject categories and languages and other factors.

 

How can you improve the Portal?

The Portal’s structure is inherently and intentionally collaborative. The Portal allows for the content of various websites to be integrated into a single single database while still respecting the autonomy of external websites.

Therefore, the Portal’s editors encourage anyone interested to contact them about possible collaboration: journals and books can be added to the online library, documents can be added to the collection (with attribution of the contributor included in the search results), and content of external sites can be included in the curated database. The editors, in short, welcome discussions about how to add further content to the Portal’s search capabilities (jesuitportal@bc.edu).

The editors of the Portal also welcome voluntary financial assistance to support the maintenance and expansion of the services provided. The intention of the Portal is to provide access to the very best of the research tools and publications in Jesuit Studies and to provide that access at no cost to to you. If you wish to make a voluntary, tax-deductible donation, please learn more here.