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The Research Strategy Step 1: Narrow your topic to one manageable issue. Step 2: The words are key: create a good keyword search strategy. Step 3: Start.

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Presentation on theme: "The Research Strategy Step 1: Narrow your topic to one manageable issue. Step 2: The words are key: create a good keyword search strategy. Step 3: Start."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Research Strategy Step 1: Narrow your topic to one manageable issue. Step 2: The words are key: create a good keyword search strategy. Step 3: Start searching for scholarly research.

2 1. Narrow your topic TOBACCO & SMOKING LEGAL MEDICAL SOCIAL Government Policy. Minors. Smoking in public places. Tobacco companies’ liability for smoking related deaths. Government Policy. Minors. Smoking in public places. Tobacco companies’ liability for smoking related deaths. Lung diseases Addiction Cessation Prevention Deaths Second-hand smoke Lung diseases Addiction Cessation Prevention Deaths Second-hand smoke Peer pressure Stereotypes Public opinion Changing public opinion Smoking in public Peer pressure Stereotypes Public opinion Changing public opinion Smoking in public CULTURAL Native traditional tobacco Age limits Cultural history Native traditional tobacco Age limits Cultural history ECONOMIC Cost of treating smoking-related illness. Taxes Industry Advertising Cost of treating smoking-related illness. Taxes Industry Advertising

3 Example of Narrowed Topic Animal Cruelty “Is horse racing cruel and dangerous to horses?” Research requirements: 1.Discover potential health risks to horses from racing. 2.Examination of injuries to racing horses. 3.Your own analysis based from your findings.

4 Excellent Narrowed Topic Same Sex Marriage “Who does same sex marriage hurt?” Research requirements: 1.Research and list reasons people and groups oppose same sex marriage. 2.Examine those reasons that have an affect on people. 3.Take one side or the other, and use research findings to support your conclusion.

5 Narrow Your Topic “What triggers an eating disorder in a teenager and what physical and emotional affects does it have?” Research Requirements: Causes for eating disorders – psychological, social, cultural, etc. Symptoms of eating disorders – binge eating, compulsive exercise, bulimia, anorexia, etc. Long and short term physical affects from all eating disorders for both male and female teens Long and short term emotional affects from all eating disorders for both male and female teens Most topics are too ambitious Select ONE compelling aspect of your topic, and focus on that aspect only.

6 How to narrow your topic: two steps Topic: Should prostitution be legal or illegal? 1. Read overview of subject in a subject encyclopedia. i.e. Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment 2. Look for research questions identified in encyclopedia article. New Topic: Do legalization programs promote the customer’s well being or the prostitute’s? Comparison of working conditions for prostitutes in Nevada, Australia, and the Netherlands.

7 Sources to use to narrow your topic The following sources provide excellent scholarly summaries for many topics: 1.CQ Researcher Available on campus using the CQ Researcher database: 2.Subject Encyclopedias – Print or Online Print. Online: Gale Virtual Reference 3.Issues and Controversies 4.SIRS

8 2. Identify the Best Keywords 1. What is my issue? Example: Prostitution 2.What do I want to know? Do legalization programs promote the customer’s well being or the prostitute’s? Comparison of working conditions for prostitutes in Nevada, Australia, and the Netherlands. 3.What are the main words in the question? Prostitutes Legalization Working conditions Nevada AustraliaNetherlands

9 Construct a keyword search 4. What are other forms of my keywords? Prostitution (prostitution OR “sex workers”) “sex workers” prostitut* SIMILAR & RELATED TERMS Find ALL related resources SIMILAR & RELATED TERMS Find ALL related resources TRUNCATION Searches for all words with the same stem (prostitute, prostitutes, prostitution) TRUNCATION Searches for all words with the same stem (prostitute, prostitutes, prostitution) PHRASE SEARCHING Use “quotation marks” around common phrases PHRASE SEARCHING Use “quotation marks” around common phrases

10 3. Start Searching! 5.Put your keywords together and use them to search both periodical databases and internet search engines: (prostitut* OR “sex workers”) AND (legalization OR legalisation) AND work* AND conditions

11 QUESTIONS? Tatiana Shabelnik – Thank you for visiting Rio Hondo College Library!


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