Types of sources


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Types of sources

  1. 1. Types of Information Sources<br />9th Grade Research Project<br />
  2. 2. Academic Research Overview<br />Research is an art, not a science. It requires that a person follows different paths to find information. <br />Research is rigorous; it means not quitting until you find the information that you want and need, even if it takes hours.<br />Research never looks the same twice; some research can be done in a library, others online, others through conversations and so on; the interests of the researcher and the topics determine the nature of the research. <br />
  3. 3. Types of Sources<br />Primary sources are firsthand, "direct from the source" information. Primary sources are the most objective account of your subject you can find. <br />Autobiography<br />A work of literature<br />A study conducted by a scientist<br />Secondary Sources: Analyses or comments on the primary source or subject. Secondary sources, by nature, contain bias and subjectivity. This is not a bad thing.<br />Literary criticism or reviews of books<br />A biography of an individual<br />A documentary on an individual<br />
  4. 4. Major Types of Sources<br />Books<br />Periodicals<br />Scholarly Journals<br />Movies/Documentaries<br />Websites<br />Encyclopedias online or print are not sources of<br />information. However they may be a good place to<br />start to gather information. <br />
  5. 5. Books<br />Books are great sources because they have withheld heavy scrutiny and editing, so the information in them in generally reliable and vast. The types of books you will find are:<br />Autobiographies/Biographies<br />Text/History Books<br />Collections of essays/articles<br />
  6. 6. Periodicals<br />Periodicals are any written information that comes out periodically. (Hence the name.) Newspapers, magazines, and journals are all periodicals. The articles within periodicals tend to be more specific or about certain aspects of an issue, versus monographs. Periodicals take many forms.<br />
  7. 7. Types of Periodicals<br />Newspapers: usually offer articles that are factual accounts of events, but they can be an analysis of trends or issues as well. <br />Popular Magazines: are the least scholarly and are mainly for entertainment. Articles tend to offer general tips or advice, or interviews with celebrities. <br />Examples: Good Housekeeping, GQ, People, Road & Track, Vogue, etc. <br />News Magazines: are more similar to newspapers, in that they offer factual, current events news and analysis. <br />Examples: Economist, Maclean's, Newsweek, Time, etc. <br />Opinion Magazines: only offer analysis of issues and trends, sometimes with a political agenda. <br />Examples: Christianity Today, The Nation, National Review, New Republic, etc.<br />A Journal: is the name given a periodical that is scholarly in nature. Articles are written by researchers or academics and should offer citations to sources consulted. How a particular article winds up in the journal depends on the kind of journal it is. <br />
  8. 8. Reference Materials<br />While reference materials can offer a general overview, they are not good sources for academic resources. They are a good place to start to get ideas on where to go next, and some will offer sources where they received the information. <br />Encyclopedias: are the best sources for reading an overview of a topic. <br />Dictionaries offer shorter definitions and summaries of terms. Like encyclopedias, dictionaries can be general or subject-specific. Also, just to make it even more confusing, some reference works are entitled Dictionary of something, but are in fact encyclopedias in terms of scope and length of the entries.<br />Handbooks/Manuals/Guides are works that offer quick facts, formulas, equations, or names and addresses for a particular subject. <br />Atlasas, Almanacs, and Statistical compilations<br />
  9. 9. Electronic Sources<br />Converted from print: These are simply print sources that have been converted. They are every bit as good as the print version, but potentially more easily accessable for most. The do often come with a price tag. <br />Electronic books<br />Electronic journals<br />Electronic Periodicals<br />
  10. 10. Free Websites<br />These are a blessing and a curse. There's a lot of useful information out there in cyberspace, as well as lots of unsubstantiated, worthless information as well. <br />Pros<br /><ul><li>Easy to access from anywhere
  11. 11. Vast amounts of material on every source</li></ul>Cons<br /><ul><li>Unsubstantiated
  12. 12. Difficult to determine good vs. bad or to narrow down to several good sources
  13. 13. Hard to determine original source or publication</li></li></ul><li>Example<br />Google Search of Martin Luther King Jr.<br />http://www.google.com/#hl=en&source=hp&q=martin+luther+king+jr&aq=0&aqi=g10&aql=&oq=martin+luther+king&gs_rfai=&fp=a2bb30ecf4f91972<br />Google Scholar Search of Martin Luther King Jr. <br />http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=martin+luther+king+jr.&hl=en&btnG=Search&as_sdt=800000000001&as_sdtp=on<br />
  14. 14. Good Free Website Sources<br />Seek websites that are tied to “reliable” organizations and are not by individuals or propaganda pushers.<br />
  15. 15. Good Free Websites<br />Commercial Enterprises: they bothered because they want to sell you something, or they want to attract your attention to bring in advertising revenue. <br />Mainstream news organizations or publishers: they are already set up to make money via advertising, so they may be able afford to offer free content. But they may only have a week's worth of articles available, or selected articles to entice you to subscribe.<br />Federal and state government agencies: they have a legal mandate to disseminate information gathered via tax dollars back to the public. So the Internet is seen as a cheaper method of dissemination than print.<br />Non-profit organizations: they want to "get the word out" about their cause, so the Internet is a perfect medium to distribute their own reports.<br />Scholarly information: generated by academics can be found, but we are still in the infancy of the Internet being used for this. There have been a number of big pushes to have more e-journals, to counteract the costs of scholarly journals, especially in the sciences. And there are a number of digitization projects of historical, primary documents on the Web, many of them sponsored by academic institutions.<br />
  16. 16. Some Good Sites to Access<br />http://scholar.google.com/<br />http://www.gale.cengage.com/servlet/SearchPageServlet?region=9&imprint=k12&st=As<br />http://www.ligonierlibrary.org/<br />