What Students Should Know Before Beginning Research

By Brian Martin

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Whenever a professor assigns an essay, students scramble to find the sources they need to write their papers in the most simple way possible. Sometimes students make the mistake of finding sources that are either irrelevant or inauthentic for their essays.

Fortunately, there are ways to avoid running into this problem. One tip that can help immensely is to use the Lynn Library website to search for sources. All one needs to do is go to the website’s homepage and utilize the search bar to type in the subject.

One important thing to remember when finding sources for the essay is they must be peer-reviewed. Peer-reviewed means an article has been reviewed by experts. These sources will help give credible information that can apply to one’s research paper.For example, say one wants to do research on the Great Depression and they use the library’s website to do it. After one types in the search term, thousands of sources pop up. If one selects the peer-reviewed box located to the left of the sources in the side menu, the choices narrow down to the articles that have been peer-reviewed.

If one does not feel entirely comfortable using the library’s database, then there are other databases on the library’s website to choose from. This brings us to the third tip about using other online databases. On the Lynn Library’s website, you can search up other databases you want to use simply by clicking “databases” on the homepage.

After doing that, one has the ability to view these databases and decide which one best fits the need of the paper. For example, if one is researching financial statistics for a paper they can just search any finance databases. If one feels they can get their information elsewhere on the Internet, that is a huge risk to undertake.

The fourth tip is to use reliable websites if one feels the database articles are not going to be enough. Websites recommended to gather research from are .edu, .gov or .org websites. Even though those types of websites may contain credible information, still double check the information just to be on the safe side.

Lastly, if a student is unsure on how to conduct research for essays, there are guides to help. In this case, consider using the “Information Literacy” guides. These iBooks, which are available through many Dialogue classes, are designed to teach students how to conduct research for their essays.

These guides will give students the lessons needed regarding how to properly search for sources, and what pitfalls to avoid.

Brian Martin

Brian Martin is entering his final semester and intends to make the most out of it. As his time with iPulse is coming to an end, Martin looks back on his previous years and cherishes all the experiences he has had in such a short period of time. Having received numerous academic accolades and partaking in different internships, including one with the Miami Herald, Martin is only striving to learn even more and succeed following his graduation this May. After graduation, he plans to move to Los Angeles and work for a pop culture news organization like IGN. Being a nerd at heart, his passions include playing video games and reading comics.

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