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#EDUC 1300: First Year Experience

This guide provides additional resources in support of the EDUC 1300 course.

The Quick Version

Magnifying glass over book iconWikipedia and Google are fantastic.
Searching them is not the same as doing academic research, however.

But why not?

Analogy Time: Spoilers, It's About Context

Guy lounging on couch in sweats, reading his phone, along with a couple close-ups of sweatpants. Picture your favorite, comfiest pair of pants. Maybe they're a little unflattering, or maybe they're looking a little shabby while you wear them to death. You take naps in them, you run errands in them, you walk the dog in them -- they're great.

But would you wear them to a job interview? (Or a wedding or a first date?)

Probably not. (Yeah, yeah, there's exceptions for everything. Typically not, though.)


Man in a suit, sunglasses, and holding a briefcase in front of a stone facade, accompanied by close-ups of sleeve buttons and lapels of a light blue suit.When you have a fancier occasion -- when you're trying to stand out and look sharp and professional, you have other clothes for that!

In this analogy, Wikipedia and casually clicking a couple Google results are the sweatpants. They're comfy, they're easy, they're familiar... and they're not appropriate for every situation.

If your professor is telling you they want "scholarly sources" -- well, you need to swap the sweats for a suit, which in this case is standing in more reputable websites, white papers, conference proceedings, and journal articles. Let the library databases be your atelier.

But wait, this analogy keeps going!

You might be wearing your comfy sweats while getting ready to put on the fancy suit -- while you shave or do makeup or iron a shirt or try to find your other shoe.

So, too, with research.

It's perfectly fine to get started with Wikipedia and Google. For the earliest stages of your research, it's important to explore and get to know your topic a little. This will give you ideas about how to search for your "suit" sources more effectively, as well as understand the scope of your topic better.

Just don't forget to change your pants.

Not sure what to wear?

Isn't this analogy great? It just keeps going and going.

Your librarians are your tailors, your personal shoppers, and/or your style consultants. If you're not sure you're "dressed for the occasion" or just want to check that a color "looks right on you," ask us!

Online Library Materials

The library has gateways to databases containing scholarly articles, videos, e-books, and more, all available 24/7 and accessible with your library card!

Related Guides: Research

Research Process

So, you have a research project. This guide will walk you through the research process, from selecting a topic to doing your search and putting it all together.

Journals & Periodicals: Identifying Scholarly Sources

Learn how to distinguish between the 3 major categories of information sources: scholarly, popular, and trade.

Related Guides: Citations & Style Guides

Citations: MLA Style (9th ed.)

A guide to writing and citing in MLA format.

Citations: APA Style (7th ed.)

How to create a document and cite using the most recent edition of APA.

Citations: Chicago Style (17th ed.)

Guide to formatting and citing using the notes-bibliography format for Chicago Style, 17th. ed.