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Don't get lost in your topic! Always start your research project by doing some background reading. This will help you to understand the context of your topic so you can research more effectively. You may also decide that you want to change the focus of your research as you learn more about your topic. Your background readings will also help you identify keywords you can use in your searching as you continue your research.
Gale eBooks has over 200 encyclopedias and specialized reference sources for multidisciplinary research. Look here for biology, chemistry, nursing and medicine, sociology, history, education, law, and more.
Provides online versions of 500 published reference works, including general and specialized dictionaries and encyclopedias. Try the Concept Map to search for terms and topics that are interconnected and displayed in a visual form.
An online version of McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science & Technology and McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms. It contains nearly 9,000 online encyclopedia articles, terms, images and videos related to sciences and technology. The Study Center provides essay topics, study guides and bibliographies.
An encyclopedia that anyone can edit. Because of this, it can be a good source of basic information and additional resources (in the bibliography), but you want to make sure the information is backed up in other sources.
Brainstorm Keywords for Searching
As you read about your topic, make a note of search terms that will be useful for finding articles on your topic. When you are searching Google or other search engines, you can use "natural language" searching - just type in your whole question and you may find exactly what you want. Database searching and advanced Google searching requires more precise use of search terms.
Watch the 2 minute video from Portland State University below for some useful tips.
Full text for regional U.S. newspapers, international newspapers, news wires, newspaper columns as well as 24 TV and radio news transcripts. Also contains indexing and abstracts for national newspapers.
Provides access to selected articles from nearly 2,500 major newspapers, including U.S. regional, national, and local papers as well as leading titles from around the world. Does not include The Oregonian.