Getting started with your research


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Getting started with your research

  1. 1. Star ting your research paper Credit: Waikato Information Skills Education  and used with permission: © 2009 The University of Waikato Library :
  2. 2. Distinguishing assignment words A critique/analysis of a book such as The Woman’s Bible by Elizabeth Cady Stanton. A study of a major female character, such as Sarah Grimke or Hildegard of Bingen. An analysis of women’s leadership in the temperance movements. An exploration of women, religion and food taboos. • Task words provide instructions on how to approach an assignment e.g. “exploration”, analysis, compare, discuss, evaluate. • Keywords convey the significant meaning of a topic e.g. “temperance” “leadership” “women”, “religion,” “food taboos” etc.
  3. 3. Narrowing an assignment topic Most assignments are broad and require that you choose a particular focus to research: Who – is there a specific person/people/group on which to focus? e.g. Woman's Christian Temperance Union in Canada? Where – is there a geographical aspect to the topic? e.g. Europe? North America? Canada? Maritimes? When – is there a particular timeframe or period of interest? e.g. 19th century? Early 20th century? What – is there a specific event or set of circumstances involved? e.g. Prohibition ? Education programs? Women’s suffrage? How – is there a particular point of view to use? e.g. Gender roles?
  4. 4. Develop your thesis statement • A thesis statement should be the most concise declaration of what you are trying to prove. • Show how relevant your thesis statement is to the topic. Keep your topic precise. Let the reader know what you will explore and what are the limits that you will not explore during the course of your essay. • Your thesis statement should guide the outline of your essay.
  5. 5. Brainstorming for search keywords • The keywords identified in an assignment do not always pinpoint the specific information required. • Keywords used in assignments may not be the ones used by writers. • Word variations must be considered, to find alternative keywords.
  6. 6. Brainstorming includes: • different endings of a • groups and root word personalities Leaders, leading , leadership Woman’s Christian Temperance Use ‘*’ e.g. lead* to search all Union, Letitia Youman endings. • synonyms and • acronyms WCTU related terms Temperance, prohibition, • word variations abstinence Nineteen hundreds, 20th century, • antonyms 1900’s Alcoholism, drunkenness, Use ‘?’to assist in search for decades intoxication 191? or 192? searches for 1910 - 1929