Fact Finding vs. Research
Search and search and search again...Literally Re-search
|Typically answers a well defined question||Provides a description, explanation, or understanding of a topic or idea|
|Answer exists before starting||Answer is not known before starting. It can remain that way or even answered in a variety of ways|
|Can be accomplished quickly||A process which takes place over time|
|Acquire Information||Acquire Insight|
|Facts and data||Discovery and presentation of facts|
|Information is static - not open to interpretation||Fluid - Open to interpretation based on context, perspective, purpose, etc.|
|Facts and/or data likely from a single source||Facts and/or data may come from multiple sources|
|Example: In 2019 how many students graduated from a 4 year college?||Example: Why do some students finish college and others do not?|
Research Process Overview
Research is a process
Research is a systematic, organized process involving acquiring, interpreting, and assimilating information. All research involves a cycle of stages and can begin at any stage and may pass through many (even all) stages more than once. There is an emotional component associated with each stage as well.
Define your Need (Uncertaintity)
What do you need to know?
Define your Topic (Optimism)
How do your needs wok with your topic.
Plan your Strategy (Confusion & Frustration)
Where will you look? What tools to use?
Access Information (Clarity & Confidence)
Use Library tools , etc to find information.
Evaluate Information (Sense of (Dis)Satisfaction)
Is this what you need or expect?
Where in the Research Cycle do I need to be?
Do I have enough to complete my assignment?
Research takes time:
Define Your Needs
(Re)Define your Information need
What do you need to know?
- First Hand accounts
- Research Articles
What tools are you encouraged to use?
- Library Databases
Define your Topic
(Re)Define your Topic
Identify topic and develop thesis if necessary.
If you are struggling with a topic, some help is available here.
Does your topic require specialized information or vocabulary (i.e. medical or legal terminology)
Once you select your topic, many people find it helpful to start asking questions to help identify areas of research:
Who, What, Why, Where, and How?
Do you need a thesis statement? Consult with your instructor on ways to convert your topic into a thesis.
Is your topic manageable?
Select a topic for which you can find a manageable amount of information. Do a preliminary search of information sources to determine whether existing sources will meet your needs.
If you find too much information, you may need to narrow your topic.
If you find too little, you may need to broaden your topic.
Plan Your Strategy
(Re)Define your Research Strategy
Confusion and Frustration
Identify keywords and concepts for your topic
Perform a preliminary search using background information sources, Internet Searching, or reviewing your notes/textbook and identify concepts, people, or keywords to help in your search.
You may need to change or refocus your topic at this stage
Identify the right tools and places to find information
Who is interested in your issue or problem? Are they researching or publishing on the issue? Do they have a website?
Are there any instructions from your instructor concerning websites, scholarly journals, etc?
- Identify the most helpful or likely places to find information:
- Books: Books and eBooks can offer in-depth and very particular information about a subject. they can also provide an overview of the issue in context or a concise summary of than issue.
- Encyclopedias: Reference Materials such as encyclopedias provide background information as well as definitions or an overview.
- Newspapers: Offer up to date and local information.
- Popular Magazines: Shorter articles written by journalists or reporters usually summarizing or outlining an issue
- Journal Articles: Written by experts in the field, they can include original research or ideas. Assumes the reader has prior knowledge on a subject.
Where to find information?
Finding information is not always a problem for researchers. Finding the right information is.
Use the resources found in the rest of this guide to help you find legitimate and worthwhile sources for your paper.
Finding background information with encyclopedias, dictionaries, etc...
Find Books, ebooks, and Media
Finding articles in Library Databases
Other paid Library Resources
Using Google Scholar
Access and Review Information
Clarity and Sense of Confidence
As you research and find information, ask yourself:
Am I finding enough information?
Are my keywords working?
Are there aspects of the subject/topic I missed?
What other avenues of research do I need to explore?
Identify the resources (and sources) you want to use for your paper and where you will place them in your paper.
Identify successful searches and keyword combinations.
Use CRAAP or other method to evaluate your resources
- There are many different acronyms and methods to help you evaluate resources for your paper.
- Make sure you are using trustworthy sources.
(Re)Evaluate Your Information
Sense of (Dis)satisfaction
Take notes on what you find
Make sure you record where you found the information and what type of note it is: summary, paraphrase, or direct quote.
Keep your notes and sources organized so that when it comes time to write, you will be ready to break down your paper into sections that coincide with your notes.
- The following note taking sheet may help you stay organized and keep good notes.
- Last Updated: Jan 11, 2022 3:05 PM
- URL: https://maui.hawaii.libguides.com/COM145
- Print Page
Email: email@example.com | Phone: (808) 984-3233 | Text: (808) 518-4080