Determining the right sources to use, and evaluating those
sources is an important skill we need all the time. It’s been
called an art as well as work—much of which is detective work.
Each academic area has its own specialized vocabulary and
research sources; do your students know where to look to find
Helping them decide where to look, what clues to search for, and
what to accept can go a long way toward helping them turn in
They may be overwhelmed with too much information or too little.
For the student, the temptation is to accept whatever they find.
When writing research papers or conducting research for a project,
they will need to make decisions about what to search for, and
where to look. Once a student finds material on the assigned topic,
they still need to decide whether to use it.
Help them ask themselves some questions before they start.
You might also want to ask the library to setup some instruction
and one on one assistance for help in narrowing topics and
determining reference sources.
Some suggested questions you might want to pose to your
students, or place in your assignment handout: What kind of
information should you look for? Do you want facts? Opinions? News
reports? Research studies? |Analyses? Personal reflections?
Where would be a likely place to look? Which sources are likely
to be most useful to you? The library? Academic journals?
Newspapers? Government records? The Internet?
Common sources of information the students can find in
Current event: a reliable newspaper like the NY Times
Statistics on some aspect of the U.S. population?
United States Statistical Abstract
United States census reports (available online)
Scholarly interpretations of literature:
Academic periodicals and books are likely to have what you’re
looking for - go to the library's page.
Commercial products/Companies: Hoovers Company Capsules
(available through the Library's subscription for EBSCOhost) as
well as company web sites with information
Local history: LeocatVoyager, the library's subscription to
Newspaper Source (thru EBSCOhost), county public libraries, local
government offices, or a local newspaper archive is likely to be
the most useful.
Religion topics: The Cannon Memorial library has extensive
religous holdings; start with LeocatVoyager, and include a search
of the ATLA Religion database, which is available through the
library's subscription to EBSCOhost. For general information,
biblical interpretive texts, etc., we have a large selection of
reference books available.
Psychology projects and papers: If you need scholarly articles,
PsycInfo will have abstracts available. There will be a link to
LeocatVoyager that says "check for holdings". If we own the
journal, the citation from our card catalog will show when you
click on that link. The article might also be available full text
thru EBSCOhost or ProQuest. If you do not find the articles in any
of those places, we can order it through InterLibrary Loan. For
general information, psychological test, etc., we have a large
selection of reference books available.
Science projects and papers: A good starting point would be the
reference section of the library, as well as our online databases
for scholarly articles --we subscribe to Academic Full Text
Elite,which is available through the library's subscription
toEBSCOhost, and General Science Index, which is available through
the library's subscription to H.W. Wilson Omnifile.
English and Literature projects and papers: A good starting
point would be the reference section of the library, as well as our
online databases for scholarly articles --we subscribe to
Contemporary Authors, Short Story Index, and Reader's Guide.
Military History, ROTC projects and papers: Designed to offer
current news pertaining to all branches of the military, Military
Library Fulltext database would be a good resource to examine,
along with our selected website links for students.