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Scholarly articles are not the place to start your research. First, you need to get familiar enough with your topic that you can start to narrow it down, and for that you need more general information. This will help you develop context for your topic as well as get to know the specialized terms used by experts.
Use your Lone Star email address to create an account via this link. Once you've made an account, you can go straight to the regular NYT site (nytimes.com) and log in as if you were a paying subscriber.
and even what kind of pages you've searched for in the past.
Notice that "accuracy" or "reliability" don't make the list.
You can streamline the quality of your Google searches by focusing on government (.gov) and education (.edu) domains in your results.
.gov is the most strict to register -- non-government entities can't get it!
.edu is mostly universities
The big thing to watch out for is that you're not finding a student paper or project that's been posted on the university domain. Presumably their work is pretty good since it's being shown off publicly, but undergrads are not yet academic experts in their fields.
.org is another more limited domain (to organizations), but it's also the least reliable of the three special domains.
Google has some advanced search commands to make this quicker. Just add site:___ to your search! E.g. site:nasa.gov or even just site:.edu. Try it below!
Over 100,000 ebook titles covering a full range of academic topics. General reference works are also included.
If you like reading on paper and have a little time to wait, you may want to search the catalog for possible books to use for your research.
If you see something good, you can "Place hold" to request the book be sent to a library of your choice. (This can take several business days.)
Since books are grouped together by topic, it can be a good idea to actually visit the library* and go to the shelf of that particular book. Chances are the books on either side of it are going to be helpful, too!
* Note: the library at LSC-University Park is all-digital, so come here for everything but browsing the shelves!
The library databases and Google both have advanced search options to help you narrow down your results!
In its most basic sense, a database is just a selection of information designed for you to search and retrieve stuff from it. Amazon is a database you're probably familiar with: it's limited (only contains things you can buy through them) and retrievable (you can search and filter your results to find what you're looking for).
The library databases contain reputable, reliable sources of information to support researchers like you! This means everything from digital encyclopedias (like Credo), ebooks, scholarly journal articles, magazine and newspaper articles, streaming videos, statistics, and more.
Managing Your Research
While conducting research you will need to capture the articles and associated citations. Your process will be very individual, but be consistent and choose a tool to help organize your research. Some suggested tools below:
OneDrive - Cloud storage from Microsoft Office 365. 1 TB free for Lone Star College students.
Evernote - The Basic version is free. Works across all mobile devices. Create notebooks for each course or writing assignment. Be sure to download the Web Clipper as well.
Zotero - Zotero is a free, open access extension that runs in the Firefox and Chrome browsers that's designed to gather, download, and tag your research. Helpful tutorials.
EasyBib - Citation generator that is free for MLA.