IENG 1060                                    RESEARCH  GUIDE                                                   Dr. Monika Brown



                     WHAT TO FIND:  THE BEST SOURCES FOR RESEARCH PAPERS     see LBH 52 a-c


For most topics, use mainly 1990s magazine/journal articles, a few scholarly books (history, arts, literature); for major research paper at least 1 recent journal article with bibliography required for most topics.

The Internet offers variety, including books & magazines; pure web sites may be up to 1/3 of your sources.


For help with citation format, consult handbook, EBSCO online help, or


VARIETY: primary&secondary; book, essay collection, periodical; scholarly&general; opposing views            


QUALITY (4 Rs)   

 Related and rich: much quality information, on your focused topic or a broad subject that includes your topic

 Recent: published or updated in 1990s or later if possible; humanities/arts topics may use older publications

 Respected (peer-reviewed):academic journal or press, cited as expert; refers to other studies, has bibliog/notes

 Responsible/Reliable: uses good evidence, cites good quality sources, uses sound logic, avoids bias





A. Find ARTICLES in PERIODICALS (magazines, journals, and newspapers) and Essays in Books:

     -use advanced search to put in several key words

     -find full-text online articles or articles in library periodicals available at UNCP or other libraries

     -skim articles first; if they=re useful, print, e-mail to yourself, or cut-paste into WORD or WordPerfect file

     -check BraveCat if/how UNCP subscribes;  look for articles; copy pages, esp intr, concl. bibliogr..


___1.a. EBSCO HOST:see, use quick link in Electronic Resources/by Title

            check:  Academic Search, Masterfile, ERIC, Newspaper, Business, Health, Military & Gov, >

            MLA (literature),  CINAHL (nursing), PAIS (public affairs)             



___1.b.  other quick links to full text, etc | Proquest | OmniFile | Web of Science |  First Search |  NCLive  


___1. c. others with full text |Project Muse | LexisNexis| Opposing Views| JSTOR| Academic OneFile |




___2. A Subject Electronic Database []; use journal finder if fulltext not available



Humanities and Arts

Essay & General Literature (essays in books)       

Humanities Index (via OmniFile)

Historical Abstracts

MLA (via EBSCOhost): Literature, Language, Culture 

America: History & Life

New York Times and New York Times (Historical)
Accessible Archives (19th century documents)

Biography and Genealogy Master Index

PAIS (public affairs, via EBSCOhost)


Art Index (via Omni File/Wilson Web)

Communication and Mass Media (via EBSCOhost)

International Index to the Performing Arts [on web]: full text movie reviews



Education and Youth

ERIC-education, youth; some full text (via EBSCO)


Social Science

PsycInfo (Social Sciences, Education)                    

Social Work Abstracts       

Social Science Abstracts   

Criminal Justice Abstracts                 

Sociological Abstracts

Contemporary Women's Issues (via First Search)

Military and Government Collection (via EBSCOhost)

Science, Health, Medicine

Web of Science

General Science Index (Via Omni File)

Applied Science and Technology Index

Biological and Agricultural Index 

CINAHL/Nursing (via EBSCOhost)

Health Source





____ 3.[Library web site]: Use an ELECTRONIC REFERENCE SOURCE

            CQ RESEARCHER (online or REF H35.C67) for current issues   Lskim articles

            BRITANNICA ONLINE(student ed): thru Library site Lprint or save pages:.title page, 1st pg, bibl.

            Grove Dictionary of Art Online               New Grove Dictionary of Music Online    


____4.[Library] Use a SUBJECT REFERENCE WORK:  copy (w/bibliography) & label one article.                

       Use indexes in the last volume or at end of a book encyclopedia. Check one or ask librarian for other suggestions.


World Almanac

Encyclopedia of Art

Encyclopedia of Bioethics

Encycl. of Crime & Justice


Encyclopedia of Educational Research

Dictionary of Literary Biography

Baker Enc. Psychology & Counseling

Encycl. of Childhood & Adolescence


Encycl. of Popular Culture

Encyclopedia of Religion

Encyclopedia of Social Work

Encyclopedia of Sports Science




____5. [Library web site]Use BraveCat, the online catalog; try various searches; identify good book prospects

             print out citations for 2-5 good books, published in the last 10 years (find some with bibliography) 

             find out if book is AVAILABLE at UNCP; if due date is given, ask to have the book held for you.




 ____6. Search the WEB (Britannica, Google) for information & sites; seek out sponsored (edu, gov) sites

               L Keep records; save in file&print.


E.  Use a BIBLIOGRAPHY to help you find good sources efficiently


____ 7. From sources you have found, select a book or article with the most current/complete bibliography
  of resources on your topic.  

              Photocopy the most valuable page(s), identify source on the photocopy..


F.  Do ORIGINAL RESEARCH and FIELD RESEARCH in appropriate locations  (*one of these is required)

     Interview notes, site reports, photos, etc can appear in the Appendix to your research paper.. 

____ 8.
Do expert interview(s) or site visit/interview(s) &/or send for information from appropriate agency.                 
A professor or other professional may help you with your topic and your resources.


 ____ 9. Conduct primary or field research (take notes):

              -study/observe sites, art works

              -design and conduct a survey/questionnaire, interviews,  or an experiment (etc)

 -use/take notes on media resources: documentaries, television programs, etc.


____  10. Use your personal library, expertise, textbooks, magazines, or resources from expert,family/friends