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Note: The intent of this page is to provide a roadmap to resources--statistics, web sites, and published media on issues of gun control. The ALA Library has the same access to these materials as would any member of the library public, as we do not collect in this area. Individual libraries may have additional published resources or access to the subscription databases mentioned to further support research or to assist guiding local library users to these materials.
The databases listed below are the common ones with indexed content that would include firearms issues. The links go to the descriptive page; contact your local library reference staff for information on access.
From ProQuest, this database includes references to full-text journals, dissertations, working papers, key business and economics periodicals, country-and industry-focused reports, and downloadable data.
National Criminal Justice Reference Service
The National Criminal Justice Reference Service offers browsable topics, an abstracts search of over 225,000 records and online resources, including those from the Office of Justice Programs.
Contains comprehensive congressional information, including hearings, publications, bills and resolutions, and reports.
SocINDEX with Full Text
From EBSCO, this database covers a broad range of journal articles on topics including gender studies, criminal justice, social psychology, religion, racial studies, and social work.
From Proquest, a database with scholarly journal articles, dissertations, books and other information covering a wide variety of the social and behavioral sciences. It is useful for finding information on controversial topics as well.
Some search terms to try when searching databases for this topic:
- Assault weapons
- Background checks
- Concealed carry laws
- Federal Assault Weapon Ban
- Firearm background checks
- Firearm legislation
- Firearms and crime
- Firearms ownership -- United States
- Gun control
- Gun control policy
- Gun rights
- Gun violence
- Handgun control
- School shootings
- Second amendment rights
- Stand Your Ground
CQ Researcher provides in-depth coverage of the most important issues of the day. Reports are written by experienced journalists, footnoted and professionally fact-checked. Full-length articles include an overview, historical background, chronology, pro/con feature, plus resources for additional research. Graphics, photos and short "sidebar" features round out the reports. Shorter "Hot Topics" articles provide a solid introduction to subjects most in demand by students.NOTE: Some content requires a subscription.
Websites and Advocacy Organizations
Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
Run by advocates for the Brady Bill, this site includes links to laws and legislation at the state and federal level, briefs on the issue, and various special reports.
Campaign to Keep Guns Off Campus
The Campaign to Keep Guns off Campus works with colleges and universities across the country to oppose legislative policies that would force loaded, concealed guns on campuses.
Coalition to Stop Gun Violence
The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (CSGV) seeks to secure freedom from gun violence through research, strategic engagement and effective policy advocacy. CSGV is composed of 47 national organizations working to reduce gun violence. Our coalition members include religious organizations, child welfare advocates, public health professionals, and social justice organizations. This diversity of member organizations allows us to reach a wide variety of grassroots constituencies who share our vision of non-violence.
Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research
The Center examines the public health effects of guns in society and serves as an objective resource for policy makers, the media, advocacy groups, and the general public.
Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence
Made up of the foremost gun law attorneys in the nation, the Law Center tracks and analyzes firearms legislation in all 50 states, files amicus briefs in critical Second Amendment cases across the country, and works with lawmakers and advocates to craft and promote legislation that will reduce gun violence and save lives.
National Rifle Association (NRA)
Starting with the "Explore" tab, there are links to additional resources on gun control topics, including training and safety, laws and legislation, and policy statements.
POLITICO Gun Control
POLITICO is a nonpartisan, Washington-based political journalism organization that serves as the one-stop shop for fast in-depth coverage of the White House, Congress, politics and policy. They maintain a webpage dedicated to the latest news regarding gun control policy.
Second Amendment Foundation
The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) is dedicated to promoting a better understanding about our Constitutional heritage to privately own and possess firearms.
The Sportsmen’s Alliance works to protect and advance the outdoor heritage of hunting, fishing, trapping and shooting in all 50 state legislatures, in the courts, in Congress and at the ballot box.
Students for Concealed Carry
Students for Concealed Carry on Campus is a national, non-partisan, grassroots organization advocating that holders of state-issued concealed handgun licenses should be allowed the same measure of personal protection on college campuses that current laws afford them virtually everywhere else.
Violence Policy Center
The Violence Policy Center (VPC) works to stop gun death and injury through research, education, advocacy, and collaboration. Its approach is to view the issues through a public health perspective.
Using published reviews from both Booklist and Choice, along with suggested titles from other sources, we have compiled an OCLC Worldcat list on Gun control. Those titles on the list with reviews in those two sources are so indicated; the other material has not been consulted but has been included based on publisher description and currency. The list includes titles intended for high school and older.
Entries link to the WorldCat record for the print title in most cases.
Search terms that might be used in local catalogs include:
- Arms sales
- Assault weapons--Law and legislation
- Concealed carry of firearms
- Concealed carry of firearms--Law and legislation
- Firearms and crime--United States
- Firearms--Law and legislation
- Firearms ownership
- Gun control--United States
- Mass shootings
- School shootings
- United States. Constitution. 2nd Amendment
- Violent crimes
Research on Incidence
Childhood Firearm Injuries in the United States
Reports data from the National Survey of Children's Exposure to Violence, presenting a comprehensive analysis of firearm-related deaths and injuries among U.S. children, examining overall patters, patterns by intent, trends, and precipitating circumstances. It concludes that "Firearm injuries are an important public health problem, contributing substantially to premature death and disability of children. Understanding their nature and impact is a first step toward prevention." Published in Pediatrics, June 2017; written by Katherine A. Fowler, Linda L. Dahlberg, Tadesse Haileyesus, Carmen Gutierrez, and Sarah Bacon.
A Study of Active Shooter Incidents in the United States Between 2000 and 2013
FBI study, published September 16, 2013, to provide federal, state, and local law enforcement with data so they can better understand how to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from these incidents. (PDF, 47 pages)
Bureau of Justice Statistics
Covers corrections, courts, crime type, law enforcement, and victims
Centers for Disease Control and Prefention
CDC’s WISQARS™ (Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System) is an interactive, online database that provides fatal and nonfatal injury, violent death, and cost of injury data from a variety of trusted sources. Researchers, the media, public health professionals, and the public can use WISQARS™ data to learn more about the public health and economic burden associated with unintentional and violence-related injury in the United States.
Crime in the United States
From the FBI, an annual publication compiling the volume and rate of violent and property crime offenses for the nation and by state.
ATF Data & Statistics
From the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, a comprehensive collection of data from national surveys, state-based surveys, and collected license statistics documenting trends in firearms and commerce.
From the National Institute of Justice, statistics on prevalence of gun violence, gangs and gun-related homicide, and nonfatal firearms-related crime.
Firearm Statistical Data Sources
From the American Firearms Institute, which was established to provide accurate balanced information and resources on guns and the Second Amendment.
ATF Publications Library
Publications from the U.S. Department of Justines, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
Firearms-Control Legislation and Policy
Library of Congress report on the legal approach to gun control in 19 countries or regions other than the U.S.
Guns on Campus: Overview
From the National Conference of State Legislatures, a discussion of concealed carry weapon laws and college campuses.
Homeland Security Digital Library
A curated collection of several hundred thousand U.S. government documents pertaining to homeland security, Topics include terrorism, school violence, gangs, mass evaluation, social media use in emergencies, immigration.
United States: Gun Ownership and the Supreme Court
From the LC Law Library, an analysis of the Second Amendment and the courts.
Congressional Research Service reports
Pew Research Center
Studies on public views about guns
Polling the Nations
An online database of public opinion polls containing the full text of 700,000+ questions and responses, from 18,000+ surveys and 1,700+ polling organizations, conducted from 1986 through the present in the United States and more than 100 other countries around the world.