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College Research

College Research

This short collaborative research unit prepared by the Teacher Librarians of TVUSD (Claudia Durnerin, Kathy Hall, and Sandy Wren), introduces students to basic College Research skills and concepts.

 

Before coming to the library, classes work on selecting a research topic, watch the short videos, and do the handouts.

 

In the library, the Teacher Librarian will demonstrate EBSCO, ebooks, review use of the online library catalog, how to build resource lists, and locating sources in the library (library layout).

 

Resources below: Top 10 Things to Know (left side), Handouts and Additional Resources (right side)

#2 : What are databases?

2:34 minutes  Yavapai College Library

Download the Database Comparison Chart

Pick up a passwords bookmark in the library, try a database search. 

#4 : Boolean Operators

2:45 minutes  University Libraries

Download Boolean operators chart and make your own chart.

#6 Scholarly Journal articles

Look at examples of Scholarly, Popular, or Trade journals. Do the Tutorial and worksheet.

Top 10 Things to Know about College Research

1. The librarian is your best friend! Colleges employ librarians just to help students with research, so ask if you need help.

2. College libraries are different than high school libraries.

  • High schools have small collections (under 100,000 books), colleges have large collections.
  • High schools use Dewey Decimal, colleges use Library of Congress.
  • High schools have fiction, nonfiction, reference and e-books; colleges have specialized collections for various disciplines.
  • Check out this interactive tour from the University of Georgia to get an overview of how college libraries are organized.

3. You will be assigned a research project and then be on your own do get it done! Start by developing a research question.

4. Learn how to find various SOURCES of information. Tutorial from UCI Library on The Information Process

5. There's a difference between surfing the internet or researching! (from Boston University)

6. If you do use the internet to search for information, you need skills!

7. Learn how to talk to databases to find authoritative information, here are some tips:

  • Databases don't understand questions! Use your research question to find keywords for searching (see videos on this page)
  • use the keywords, boolean operators and truncation skills to do effective searches on databases (see videos on this page)

8. Avoid plagiarism, it can get you kicked out of school! Plus it's just tacky to take credit for other people's ideas and words.

9. Your professors will be extremely picky about citations. Most high schools use Modern Language Association style, but there are many others!

10. TURNING IN A COLLEGE PAPER LATE = A BIG FAT 0. This is a surprise to many college freshmen. No late papers, no excuses.

* thanks to the librarians at Bakersfield City College for suggesting these links!

#1: Research questions

Watch the video, do the tutorial on Developing a Research Question. Record answers on Handout#1.

#3 Developing Keywords

1:28 University of Houston libraries 

Watch the video on YouTube and the video that follows, Search Using Keywords. Do Handout #3, Keywords and Related Subjects.

#5 : Keywords & databases

2:40 minutes Northwestern University Libraries

Watch the video, download the Effective Search Strategies chart .

Fill it in for your topic.

Watch the EBSCO Advanced Search tutorial below.

Use your chart to do a Boolean search on EBSCO.

EBSCO Advanced Search

 2:12 minutes  EBSCO Support

 

Resources

#1   Developing a research question - exercise from Empire State College

#2   Database comparison chart - which databases are best for your project?

#3   Keywords and Related Subjects worksheet

#4   Boolean operators - example chart from SIRS

# 5  Effective search strategies: narrow your search 

#6   What are the parts of a scholarly article? Do the online interactive tutorial, then label the parts of the article on the handout.

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

MLA 8th Edition

Research Topic Ideas (U of Michigan)

How to focus your topic (U of Michigan)

The Research Process (U of Michigan)

Search Tools from Infopeople - internet resources you may not be aware of

Internet Guide to Directories, Search Engines, MetaSearch Engines, Virtual Libraries

CRAAP Method of Evaluating Sources (U of Michigan)

Library of Congress Classification System from Pierce College

Scholarly, Popular or Trade? examples of different resources, from William H. Hannon Library LMU

Parts of a scholarly journal article - YouTube video from Bowman Library

Understanding Journals (U of Michigan)

 

see also the Primary Sources link on the Research Database page, and the Academic Sources links on the Steps to Research Page

MSJC Dual Enrollment

MSJC Dual Enrollment Students

 

MSJC Library

 

MSJC Guide to Library Resources (pdf)