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Transcript of Research Skills
Research relies on your information literacy skills.
Information literacy is your ability to
All in an ethical manner
The 6 "Ws"
When you find information, it's important to evaluate it.
You are researching how a chemical process pollutes a lake.
Which is the best source? What source is most likely to biased?
1. A magazine article on the effects of the chemical on wildlife (note: a journal is least likely to be biased)
2. A website by a chemical company
3. A government article about a new
method for disposing of the chemical
4. A textbook about the history of logging
Use the Online Catalog
Combine Terms and use the Advanced Search
Many databases allow you to use search operators (Boolean operators) to help you narrow your search
- finds articles that contain both terms
- finds articles that contain either or both terms
- finds article that contain one term and not the other
Why is this important?
Note: You can also narrow results by filtering by date!
What is the difference?
To find a book on any topic, what library resource would you use?
To find a chapter in a book - use the table of contents. To find your topic in a large book use the index.
Question: If you want to find the cost of operating different car models, would the library catalog be a good place to start?
How would these books appear on the shelf?
The Clocks by Agatha Christie
Song of the Lark by Willa Cather
Reached by Ally Condie
The Lady and the Unicorn by Tracy Chevalier
And, or, not - these words combine search terms in an advanced search
ho - is the author an
hat - is the information relevant?
hen - how old is the information?
here - where was the information published? Is the source reliable,
hy - what was the author's motive?
- how did the author get her or his information?
Oscar Wilde - to broaden (find more articles)
At your library online catalog
Database search strategies
You used a magazine article titled: "Violence and prime-time TV" in a paper. You need more information for your citation. How can you locate your information?
A. Subject search
B. Advanced search
C. Title search
When do you use an encyclopedia?
Why do you narrow a topic?
Which group of topics are grouped from broadest topic to narrowest topic?
bottle-nosed dolphins, dolphins, mammals, animals
animals, mammals, dolphins, bottle-nosed dolphins
1. To gain overview information about a topic
2. As the first step in the information process
3. For topics related to more general knowledge
Which topic is most narrow?
1. The typical day of an elementary school student in Japan
3. Education in Japan today
When is a topic is Too Narrow for a 3 page paper? Topic: Why is smoking banned in public places?
What question best addresses your assignment? Why is it important to be able narrow or broaden a topic? How does the number of pages impact your choice of topic?
You can use a
in some databases.
You are researching Islamic art. What database would be best?
Religions of the World
Eastern Cultures and Life
Question: Why is a database a good place to start when you need slides for a presentation?
Search strategies are important
Identify key words and concepts
example: Cultural differences are important when launching a global advertising campaign
cultural culture global
advertising marketing brands
Choose full-text and if you choose
academic journals, and scholarly journals; they are peer-reviewed! These are authoritative and credible sources!
Question: What is a good way to keep track of sources? (notecards? spreadsheets [when you have many ideas] works cited?)
includes trade journals and scholarly journals
many only online
searchable via databases
should be evaluated for accuracy, credibility, and currency (w's)
Using Information Ethically
1. Cite all information including art work, ideas, music.
2. Respect copyright law. Obtain permission when you publish material belonging to someone else. Give them credit.
(10 percent, no more than 30 seconds of a song may be used in a presentation, 10 percent, 3 minutes of a video)
3. As soon as you write something, it belongs to you.
4. Many educational uses are covered under fair use laws. (Example: you may show a music video, movie clip, clip from a TV show)
" An information literate individual--with their strong analytical, critical thinking and problem-solving skills--can be expected to be an adaptable, capable and valuable employee, with much to contribute. "
quote from: Philadelphia University at:
What is a primary source?
1. an eyewitness account - a letter, diary, log, video of a participant, an interview of a survivor, letter, autobiography, etc.
* Not an article, brochure, website, biography, etc.
Where do you start?
1. Encyclopedia (always good for background information or an overview of a historical topic)
3. Search in a database (good for current events, science or medicine today)
Note: if you are creating a video, an interview is a better resource,
a social network should not be used for research, and always try other sources before Google for academic research
The order of your research is important!
1. Focus your topic
2. Identify the information needed and likely sources
3. Search, evaluate, record
4. Organize your information, create a rough draft
5. Revise your work, get feedback
6. Review the success of your research
How can you check if a fact is common knowledge?
(found in basic sources, it is information you expect others to know, it is not cited in several other sources)
What topic is the broadest?
the electoral college
the media and election coverage