ProQuest® Congressional Hearings Digital Collection
Students and faculty can bring history to life by using congressional hearings as primary source documents to enhance their research into public policy from 1824-present. Hearings are held to enable committees to gather opinions and information to help Members of Congress make decisions regarding proposed legislation or to help them fulfill their oversight and investigation responsibilities.
The ProQuest Congressional Hearings Digital Collection gives researchers access to both published and unpublished hearings, presenting an unparalleled documentary record of events and public policy issues faced by America, as well as the objectives and actions of Congress in dealing with these events and issues.
Published and unpublished hearings contain the full transcripts of the proceedings, including all oral statements, committee questions, and discussion. Published hearings also contain texts of related reports, statistical analyses, correspondence, exhibits, and articles presented by witnesses or inserted into the record by Members of Congress and committee staff.
Hearings are a valuable research tool because they contain information about a wide variety of topics. Content topics include agriculture, business, and industry; communications and transportation; education, health, housing, and public welfare; law and justice; national defense and foreign relations; and environment, energy, and science. Additionally, the format of most hearings includes question and answer sessions between Members of Congress and expert witnesses. These discussions make complex topics accessible to even the most novice researchers. Hearings make it easy for researchers to discover how Members of Congress and witnesses felt about issues that shape public policy over time.