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Finding Academic Sources

by: Mariah Tucker

Finding Academic Sources COMM 6010-01

Mariah Tucker
GPA 3.7
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About this Document

This set of notes is a brief overview of finding academic sources for a research paper. It covers the basic search engines, and what you should and should not search, when looking for sources.
Communication Theory
Dr. Jon Smith
Class Notes
communication, Theory, research




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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Mariah Tucker on Friday September 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to COMM 6010-01 at Southern Utah University taught by Dr. Jon Smith in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see Communication Theory in Communication at Southern Utah University.


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Date Created: 09/09/16
COMM 6010 Communication Theory Week 1 Notes: Academic Sources This week we discussed ways to find academic sources for research papers. I was hoping to be able to illustrate the different sources covered using screenshots, but I was told that they probably wouldn’t be the best option, so I will describe the different sources that SUU has to offer. There are many places you can go for academic sources such as the library, scholarly journals, academic searches, EBSCO Host, Research Gate, and Boolean search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Loralyn Felix instructed our class on how to use SUU’s library to access the information necessary for research. She showed us how to access EBSCO Host, and Academic Search Premier on SUU’s library site. If you use search engines such as EBSCO Host, and the school library, the results are generally peer reviewed, and are the best sources you can use for a paper or a project. However, that doesn’t mean the Boolean search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo will automatically give you lesser material. Google has a branch specifically for academic searches called Google Scholar. It runs similarly to EBSCO Host and Academic Search premiere, and will be more likely to help you find what you need for research, instead of 100,000,000 results on a topic that don’t actually have scholastic merit. Some professors will allow you to use a few sources that aren’t peer reviewed, but a majority of your sources should be peer reviewed scholastic articles, or books by experts on the topic you are researching. When you are researching something you want to make sure you are broad enough that there is actually information about your topic available, but not so broad that you are overwhelmed by the amount of information you can find on the topic. For instance if you wanted to research cats (don’t judge it’s just an example), you would find a ridiculously huge list of things related to cats when you search it. You would find cat videos, pictures, articles about having a cat, and possibly even results for the musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber, but all of that information is not necessarily beneficial to your research. You need to narrow your search, so only the articles related to your topic appear in your results list. If you wanted to specifically research why cats were domesticated, your search results would be fewer, and more specific to your research question. This search method works across any of the search options, you may just have to word it differently based on the search engine you are using. That’s essentially where to start when researching a topic for a paper. We just covered the basic search options in class, and the best ways to use them, so that’s all I have for the first week of notes for COMM 6010.


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