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The Big Six


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A brief introduction to using the"`Big6" to organise your research project.

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The Big Six

  1. 1. The Big Six Created by Mike B. Eisenberg &Robert E. Berkowitz
  2. 2. The Big Six is a tool to help you structure your research projects
  3. 3. Step 1 •Research means looking for information for a reason • Before you can find the right answers you need to ask the right questions • STOP AND THINK
  4. 4. Brainstorming What do I already know about the subject? This is an opportunity to „brainstorm‟ If the whole subject is new to you, this is a good time to look up an encyclopedia What will I have to find out so that I can answer the question? What keywords will I use in my search for information?
  5. 5. BrainstormingTry a site such as It‟s free and lets you work with other team members.
  6. 6. Keywords Think about your keywords What alternative keywords can you think for „United States‟? What is a wider keyword for „Dubai‟? What is a narrower keyword for „energy‟?
  7. 7. Step 2 More brainstorming! Where am I going to look for information?
  8. 8. What types of information do I need?These are some ideas (using
  9. 9. What types of information do I need?Decide which will be the best sources of informationDivide the work up between the team
  10. 10. Step 3 This is when you finally start to look for your information. Find that website Find the book in the library BUT……
  11. 11. Step 3BE CRITICALEvaluate the information you find: When was the website last updated? Who produced the website? Is their information biased? Is there contact information? Does the website have the information you need? Can you understand the language?
  12. 12. Step 3Use an online collaboration site such as:www.evernote.comorwww.webnotes.netOr even Google docs They all allow you to work with your team and save your work as you go. The advantage of Evernote and Webnotes is that they keep a record of the URLs of the sites you have taken information from.
  13. 13. Google it
  14. 14. Google it
  15. 15. Google it
  16. 16. IAT DatabasesTwo ways to reach the library page on the IATintranet
  17. 17. IAT Databases
  18. 18. IAT DatabasesA search on Student Research Center looks like this
  19. 19. IAT DatabasesThe results look like this:
  20. 20. Print SourcesAs with online sources BE CRITICAL Does the book have the information you need? Use your keywords to look up: THE CONTENTS PAGE & INDEX When was it published? Can you read the book easily?
  21. 21. Step 4 Now is the time to start collecting your information REMEMBER Keep a log of everywhere you search as you will need to prepare a bibliography to attach to the end of your presentation so that your teacher can see if you have been using good, reliable sources of information.
  22. 22. Step 4Basic Information to put in a BibliographyWebsite: The URL and the date you last accessed the site (last accessed 19/09/2010)Book: The author, title, publisher and date of publication e.g.Baines, J. Country Fact Files: Japan, Simon & Schuster (1992)
  23. 23. Step 4There are lots of complicated rules about how to write a bibliography. To make it easier for yourself use a website such as bibme ( which does all the hard work for you.
  24. 24. Very Brief Guide to Note-TakingDO skim the passage to get the general idea of what it is about.DO scan the passage if you are looking for a particular keyword.DON‟T copy great long passages of text (or copy and paste from a website).When you find some useful information, read it carefully and take brief notes just highlighting the main points.
  25. 25. Very Brief Guide to Note-TakingNEVER use somebody else‟s work without acknowledging it.If you do, it is called plagiarism and can land you in serious trouble.
  26. 26. Very Brief Guide to Note-TakingIt is not a problem to use somebody else‟s work but you must give them credit for it.If you use a quotation from somebody else‟s work, put the phrase or sentence “in quotation” marks and make a footnote saying where the information came from. If the quotation is from a book, remember to take a note of the page number.If you are using Microsoft Word to write up your research, there is a handy tool which enters your footnotes for you(You can find it at Insert Reference Footnote)
  27. 27. Step 5 Nearly done! This is where you put all your information together. It can be the hardest part of the whole project – selecting what to put in and what to reject. Sometimes it is necessary to go back to an earlier step – to find new information or to check your notes
  28. 28. Step 6 Positively the last step Once your project is finished and ready to hand in to the teacher, have a last look over – have you missed anything? Are the pictures all in place, are there any spelling mistakes, have you included your bibliography? Very last step – think about how well the project went. What went really well? What could have been done better? How can you make the whole process easier next time?
  29. 29. BIBLIOGRAPHY "Ages 12-14 - Information Literacy." Supporting Curriculum for Excellence (CfE), assessment, community and lifelong learning - Learning and Teaching Scotland. (last accessed19 Sept. 2010). <>. "BibMe: Fast & Easy Bibliography Maker - MLA, APA, Chicago, Turabian - Free." BibMe: Fast & Easy Bibliography Maker - MLA, APA, Chicago, Turabian - Free. (last accessed19 Sept. 2010). <>. "Skillswise printable factsheet." BBC - Homepage. (last accessed 19 Sept. 2010).< eet1.shtml>. "Big6." Big6 . (last accessed 19 Sept. 2010). <>.MLA formatting by