Where do you find information to use in a research paper? How do you use sources more relevant than Google to search for information? Below you will find all you need in order to research your topic, and, you'll also find out how to use a variety of research tools.
Where to Begin The Big 6 web site will walk you through all of the steps involved in researching information and writing a research paper from start to finish. When you receive a research assignment from a teacher, this is a great place to start.
Information Sources Paper sources are often forgotten due to our increasing dependency on online information. But, you may find great sources in the SCCS Library Media Center that you can't find online. Use the Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC) to find books on your topic or search useful magazines or newspapers for your projects. Ask the SCCS Librarian for direction to make your research more productive.
Of course, electronic resources can be extremely valuable research tools as well. Depending on the kind of information you want, you might need to use several different kinds of online tools.
At SCCS we subscribe to the EBSCO Database which can be used to find millions of articles from thousands of magazines, pamphlets and primary source documents. It also has a handy Student Research Center to help you start your inquiry. Please ask the librarian for the UserID and Password to enter this site.
Internet research can also be extremely useful, if done carefully. But, remember, for every reliable site on the Internet there are a hundred that have unreliable information. Any one can create a web site and post information online whether it is true or false. In addition, if you decide to use a search engine in your research, you will probably get more hits than you can possible use and the first few hits are not always the most useful. So, where do you start?
We know you have experience searching the Internet, but, in the case of writing a research paper, you may need to educate yourself about how to find specific citable information. The
Internet Public Library is a good source for learning how to use the Internet to conduct research in their A+ Research and Writing pages.
Using a search engine is the most popular way to do online research, but be aware that Google is not always the perfect solution. Here is a site that can help you decide which search engine is right for your particular research project. Or, if you are looking for a directory of useful sites, use Yahooligans.
Wikis, like those found at Wikipedia, are web sites that allow visitors to easily add, remove, or otherwise edit and change content. Wikis can be incredibly useful, interesting and important. But, please REMEMBER, that they are written by majority rule and the information can be completely wrong. Use caution when relying on a wiki for research.