Using the Empire State College
Online Library to Research &
Evaluate Information Sources
• Academic Support
– What is available?
– How to access resources
• The Steps in
• Using The ESC Library
• Evaluating Sources
The Pieces of Academic Success
Learning Coaches, Peer Coaches, & Content Tutors
• One-to-one appointments in-person or via phone, e-mail, Internet, etc.
• Small group assistance (online & onsite)
• Online Content Area Tutoring – Smarthinking - www.esc.edu/smarthinking
Curricular Support Face-to-Face & Online Support
• NEC Academic Support - www.necacademissupport.pbworks.com
• Workshops (online & onsite) – www.esc.edu/learningsupport
• YouTube – www.youtube.com/NECAcademicSupport
• Enhancing the Academic Eye a self-paced or credit-bearing study - http://AcademicEye.pbworks.com
• Phasing out Dec 2010-- ANGEL Community Group - NEC Academic Support http://www.esc.edu/ole
•Log in with your MyESC Username & Password
Services & Resources
Helping You Connect the Pieces for Academic Success
What is a learning coach?
A learning coach is someone who provides academic support to students in one-on-one or small group settings in all areas of the writing process
and related study skills strategies including time management, organization, reading efficiency, developing a study plan, goal setting, critical
thinking, library research skills, note-taking, and learning styles.
Sarah Spence-Staulters is located in Latham working with Schenectady & Latham/Albany students
Her hours are: Mondays – 3pm- 7:30pm
Wednesdays – 3:00pm-7:30pm
Fridays - 9am- 4pm
Contact Sarah to make an appointment :
(518) 783-6203 ext 5992 or Sarah.Spence-Staulters@esc.edu
Kate Stockton is located in Latham working with Johnstown & Latham/Albany students
Her hours are: Mondays - 4:00pm-7:30pm
Wednesday - 4:00pm-7:30pm
Thursdays - 4:00pm-8:00pm
Contact Kate to make an appointment :
(518) 783-6203 ext 5992 or Kate.Stockton@esc.edu
Mary Sanders-Shartle is located in Saratoga working with Saratoga &
Her hours are: Mondays – 12pm-2pm
Wednesdays – 3pm-6pm
Contact Mary to make an appointment :
(518) 587-2100 ext 2827 or Mary.Sanders-Shartle@esc.edu
Meet the Learning Coaches
Starting in the November Term…
Helping You Connect the Pieces for Academic Success
A peer coach is a current undergraduate or
graduate student trained to guide and encourage
other students in improving their academic
performance and development as a life-long
learner, focusing on general study skills, specific
content-areas, navigating college resources, and
developing within their Areas of Study.
They work in both face-to-face and virtual
Peer coaches are trained under College Reading
& Learning Association (CRLA) international
standards for peer tutors and are either
volunteers, work-study, or practicum students.
Academic Support @ NEC
Steps to Conducting Academic Research
• Step 1 – Clarify the Assignment
• Step 2 – Develop Research Question/Thesis
• Step 3 - Identify Keywords
• Step 4 – Understand Basic Search
• Step 5 – Begin Research Process
Step 1 – Clarify Assignment
• Is topic specified?
– Consider the …
• question(s) you are asked to address/create
• discipline through which you are approaching the topic
• specific thing(s) you already know/want to know about the topic
• What are the basic requirements?
– Length of paper required?
– Audience for your research
– Time you have available to research
– What citation format is required?
• MLA – Modern Language Association
– Used in the Humanities
• APA - American Psychological Association
– Used in the Social Sciences
• Ask your instructor any questions you may have
at beginning of process!
• THOROUGHLY UNDERSTAND YOUR TOPIC!
– Know what you are being asked/what you must address
– What interests you the most about the topic?
– Make a listing of questions you would like to have
answered about the topic
– What would capture the interest of the reader?
• Pick issue that can be researched
– Make sure topic is not too broad nor narrow in scope
– Information Literacy– Designing Research Question
– www.esc.edu/writer - Go to the “Research Room”
Step 2 – Develop Research Question/Thesis
Click the word
open an MSWord
copy of the
Step 3: Identify Keywords
Keywords: Any informative words in the text of a
document, chosen as indicating the main content
of the document.
• Keywords and subjects are not the same.
• Keywords are significant words from a document used as an
index to content.
• Subjects are the main focus of a work. Subject headings are
assigned from standards created by catalogers.
• Unless you know the word you are looking for is a subject
heading, your search maybe unsuccessful.
• Therefore, it is a good practice to start with a keyword
Step 4: Understand Basic Search Techniques
“Quotation Marks” & (Parenthesis) : allows
for the search of groups of words
Combine Words and Phrases
Truncation: to use a shortened form of a
word to search for all alternate endings.
sleep* will result in
sleeping, sleepy, sleeps
depriv* will result in
deprived, deprives, deprivation
And = a grouping of two specific
ideas (ex. Hurricane and Katrina)
Or = one idea or anther idea (ex.
United states or America)
Not = Only one idea but not any
other (ex. exercise not therapy)
Combine Words and Phrases
Using Boolean Searching
Click here for a link to more
information about this
Source of Pictures: ESC Library website
Step 3 – Begin Research Process
• WHAT TO USE -- ESC Online Library
• http://www.esc.edu/- Click on My ESC, then Library and
Learning Resources – go to Find Info Quick Start Tutorial
• All Databases & Subject Guides
• Provides links to all databases based on subject area
• College recommended academic focus websites
• WHAT TO AVOID
• General Google searches
• Avoid certain “sources” i.e., Wickipedia, unsubstantiated
sources such as blogs, statements from non-experts.
Using the ESC Online Library
The Best Links for
Conducting Your Research
WHAT DO I RESEARCH?
• Locate background information using summaries
and overviews in "reference" materials.
• Find books on your topic.
• Use online database services to search for
periodical articles using online indexes and
• Research your topic on the Internet using search
engines and subject directories.
• Evaluate, document and organize your resources.
Links to a comprehensive annotated listing of all the databases
the library subscribes to – a one-stop-shopping site for your
research. The 3 best databases are EBSCO, JSTOR &
Best Search Sites to Go To
• Jstor – Most Academic
• Ebsco – Combo Academic
• Proquest – More popular &
If you are not
sure how to
papers this is
see how. Here
to make sure
credit is given
when it is due.
Best Place to Start for an Overview of
FIVE STEPS FOR FINDING INFORMATION:
• Identify Your Topic
• Find Keywords That Describe Your
Topic and Create a Search
• Get Definitions and Background
• Find Journal and Newspaper Articles
• Document Your Information Sources
If you needed
immediate help you
can always chat live
with a librarian
The Library is a good place to find academically sound
There are 6 main sections of the library website outlined in red above:
1 - Get Started: Everything you need to get started with your research, including Dictionary &
2 - Journals & Articles: search for articles using our collection of databases.
3 - Books: search for e-books, or print books anywhere in the world.
4 - Cite Your Sources: how to create your bibliography and footnotes (or in-text citations.)
5 -Help: Ask A Librarian via e-mail, phone, or web chat. You can also access our how-tos (tutorials) here.
6 -Search Tips & News: this area shows current tips & news articles from our Library Research Blog.
What Additional Library Resources
Do You Have Access To???
Academic Library Services
• Public access to academic libraries will depend upon the nature of the
institution (i.e., public university, private college, community college, etc.).
Generally, you may be able to use materials within the library itself, but will
not be able to borrow books or use interlibrary loan. Some institutions also
restrict public access to certain times of the day, so it’s a good idea to call
• If you use a library at a State University of New York (SUNY) or City University
of New York (CUNY) institution, you will have partial access to the collection
under the SUNY Open Access and CUNY library agreements.
Public Library Services
• The major benefit is that you will have full access to library services in your
city or county of residence.
• As collections tend to support the general interest needs of its community,
collections will be limited in the availability of "scholarly" materials.
• Depending upon the size and funding of the library, interlibrary loan
services may be available.
Fall 2010 Workshop Schedule
20 Start the Term Right
27 Time Management
29 Start the Term Right
4 Navigating the ESC Websites
6 Critical Thinking
8 Introduction Library Skills ( 10am-
13 Navigating the ESC Websites
14 Time Management
18 Critical Thinking
20 Reading More Efficiently
25 Leveraging Your learning Style
28 Unblock the Writing Experience
1 Reading more Efficiently 3
3 Introduction to Library Skills
8 Unblocking the Writing Experience
17 Stress Management
19 Time Management (10am-11am)
22 Resume and Cover Letter Writing
1 Stress Management
6 Ending the Term Right
8 Ending the Term Right
9 Writing a Rational Essay
13 Stress Management
20 Resume and Cover Letter Writing
Please give us your feedback at:
Thank you for attending tonight's workshop If
you would like to view this worship again to
refresh your memory or just for fun please