Eng 1213 Semrow
Research Strategy -- Provides steps and concepts involving the research process.
Why do research?
Research can lead to information;
information can lead to knowledge,
and knowledge is powerful. All of the informational resources available
originated from someone being curious about something, exploring it,
sharing the findings.
What is authority and why is it important?
Experts in a field are individuals who might have degrees in a field,
work in the discipline, and have published in the subject area.
Their opinions can be very useful in finding credible sources.
For instance, anyone can write Wikipedia articles, but only experts can
contribute to Encyclopaedia Britannica. Keep the following concepts in
mind when choosing and using resources for research:
1. Identify authors who are outstanding in their fields, determine the credentials of the author. Does the author have a degree in the field, is the author a professor?
2. Date of publication--is it recent? On Web pages, do the links work?
3. Does the publisher have a good reputation? Is it published by a professional association or university press? Is the journal refereed? On Web pages, check the domain (.edu is educational, .gov is government, .com is commercial, .net is network, .org is organizational)
4. How was the resource received by the critics?
5. Completeness of the material. Does the source have an index, bibliography?
6. Is the language slanted or biased?
7. Does it include well known facts or research studies? Is the information complete, accurate, objective?
8. What is the purpose of the resource? Is it for the general public, children, scholars? Is the goal to market persuade, educate?
How is information organized and from where do articles originate?
The cycle of information is an
interesting one. Research starts
with an idea. Someone becomes curious about something and wants
explore it. Literature reviews are conducted, empirical evidence
gathered. The researcher may wish to cross disciplinary lines and
take a literary theory and apply it to another field. The
writes an article. If the article adds to the body of knowledge
presents a new concept, a journal in that discipline might be
in publishing it. Article submissions go through a reviewing process in
which multiple reviewers will read and comment on the article.
is an example of a refereed journal article. If it passes the review
the article is published in the journal. Indexers read journal
and assign subject headings to the articles and place the citation in
(such as MLA Bibliography). Researchers comb indexes to
articles, and the whole cycle starts over. This is a cycle that
right here at NSU. Our faculty and students are publishing.
can become a part of the process, too. Exciting, isn't it?
The Flow of Information (from the University System of Georgia) depicts how information about an event can be represented in different types of resources. Understanding how information is disseminated helps to know where to look and the attributes of each format.
How is the NSU library organized?
Physical Overview to the Library
Library of Congress
An example of a topic: Who is Candy Lightner and how did she make a difference in the world?
Encyclopedia of World Biography
Information can be shared in a variety of formats and examples are as follows:
Biography and Genealogy Master Index
Shows trends, gives history of topic, provides definitions, theories
Provides indexing to
information in biographical sources
|Journals||Covers current research on scholarly topics||Academic
Articles and Databases
|Magazines||Report on popular topics, news||Reader's
|Newspapers||Report on popular topics, news||Newspaper Source Plus
NewsBank Newsfile (Oklahoma papers)
New York Times
||Publications on all topics prepared by federal and state agencies.||
Occupational Outlook Handbook
NSU Government Information
|Audio Visuals||Graphic representation of topic||Library Catalog|
|Internet||Provides quick, full text information, especially on current topics.|
|Interviews||Provides a personal account of a topic||In person or through e-mail|
Keyword vs. controlled vocabulary, boolean logic
Research Strategies Tutorial
Locating Internet resources
How do I cite sources using M.L.A. style?
The Citations and Plagiarism tutorial provides a good overview to citing resources. The M.L.A. Handbook for Writers of Research Papers is located on the first floor at the call number, Ref. LB 2369.G53. Also, try the MLA Web site and the Purdue OWL. For additional help in citing sources, try KnightCite Bibliography Machine.
How do I acquire materials not available at NSU?
Interlibrary loan is available free of charge in which books and copies of articles can be borrowed from other libraries. Allow approximately two weeks for interlibrary loan requests to be received.
How do I find these library resources through the Web?
Many of the resources listed above are available through the John Vaughan Library Home Page. With an NT parn Language Association Web page.
SophiaBeverley Threatt, MLS, MA
Instructor of Library Services
Languages and Literature and Communication, Art, & Theatre
Page maintained by: SB Threatt firstname.lastname@example.org
Last Updated: 08/07/2012