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INQS 125: Language Matters  

Last Updated: Sep 24, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Know Your Sources!

"Know Your Sources" by Portland Community College Library

When doing research you will come across a lot of information from different types of sources. How do you decide which source to use? From tweets to newspaper articles, this tool provides a brief description of each and breaks down 6 factors to consider when selecting a source.


Where Do I Start?

timeResearch is a process:  it takes time to find the good stuff

  • Choose a topic that interests you.  Start with your textbook and course materials or advice from your professor.  Then browse reference sources, newspapers, or even Google for other ideas. 
  • Explore what kind of information is available.  See what others have published in books or periodical articles that you could develop into a topic.
  • Develop and use a Search Strategy:
    • Once you have identified a topic, write it as a question.
    • Think of as many words as you can to describe your topic. Add more words, subject headings, and descriptors that you find as you search.
    • Combine the terms for using Boolean searching techniques (AND, OR, NOT) to get more relevant sources
  • Be flexible:  Modify your topic as you discover more information.

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