Try the following databases for almost all criminal justice topics. Try searching general terms, adding more specifics as you see what language is used to describe your topic. For this example set, I'm using the general topic "domestic violence" to explore resources.
Start with a general database like Criminal Justic Abstracts. Use some of the other databases once you decide which direction you are going in. For instance, if you decide to pursue a topic based on economic concerns, then move to Business Source Complete. If you decide on a health related angle, start searching your terms in CINAHL.
In a specialty database, search the term you want (for instance "interpersonal violence" and "socio economic status" in Business Source Complete OR "interpersonal violence" and "health outcomes" in CINAHL).
Researching the effectiveness of any policy would be done in the previous databases.
To use Google effectively:
Think tank searching:
Use the Kennedy School of Business' Think Tank Search Engine to seek groups that may be interested in your topic. Once you find these think tanks, look for their research sections on their websites for materials,
How do I know if my source is scholarly?
Along with being a primary source, it is frequently important that you know if your source is scholarly and appropriate for academic research. Some traits of scholarly articles are...