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The Research Process
When you are looking for articles for your project, you are engaging in RESEARCH! Research is a process. To be successful, you should follow all steps of the process in order. You can always go back to a step, but don't jump ahead too soon! This page reviews all of the steps in the process, and then goes into more depth about Steps 1 and 2. Complete the activities below before you begin searching for articles.
Step One: Task Definition
Before you begin searching, you should make a list of KEYWORDS- terms that will be used in the search box of the databases or news outlet websites. Many times, you will need to perform multiple searches and use multiple keywords to result in a variety of sources. Remember, the more sources the better! Complete the activities below.
Part I. Create a Brainstorming Map to develop a list of keywords
Using a piece of paper or a website like https://bubbl.us/, create a map of key terms related to your topic.
Part 2: Develop synonyms/related terms list for your keywords
You might need to expand on some terms in order to search for your topic and find a variety of resources.
Example Synonyms/Related Terms and Phrases Chart
|Term in Map Above
||Alternate Term or Phrase
|Violence against women
||attacks/bloodshed/cruelty towards women
|Females in Politics
||Women in Government/Parliament
Step Two: Information Seeking Strategies
Make sure that you understand what types of sources are out there before you begin searching!
|Type of Source
- Variety of newspaper articles primary sources, maps, etc. from numerous sources
- Can be difficult to search
- Must use multiple key terms and phrases
- Article written by an expert in the field
- Takes a long time to publish, might not be as up-to-date with information as a newspaper article
- Must assess bias of the author
- Current and up-to-date information on a variety of topics
- Must assess the bias of the author
- Can be hard to differentiate between editorials and regular news articles
Purdue Owl Types of Sources
Check out this resource to learn more about the different types of sources you might encounter when researching.