Cites & Bytes @ Bailey

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

The Continuing Adventures of ResearchGrrl!: Topic? We don't need no stinking topic! Oh wait, yeah, we do...

Okay, so it's not really all that fun to do the research thing, especially when you really don't know what to research.

Since my last post I have felt the need to call in the big guns and ask an expert. According to the helpful librarians of our very own Bailey Library, the simplest way to choose a topic for a paper and to get a start on some background research is to look at the latest articles on CQ Researcher.

The strength in this plan is that you can find a hot topic, see how much information is available on it, and begin developing your understanding of what you want to write about.

Let's face it, as interesting as it would be to write a paper on hangover cures, there probably won't be an abundance of scholarly sources on this topic and it would probably end up falling through because it is not a research-friendly topic.

To access the CQ Researcher database, simply use this link and scroll down from the top of the page to the C's. The newest articles are listed on the main page but don't tie yourself to a topic you don't want to pursue.

It's important that you be able to deal with reading and writing a lot about it.

~So don't write a paper on reproductive technologies if you really don't want to think about zygotes and embryos and fetus (fetuses? fetii? What is the plural form of fetus?)

~Just follow your gut- if you aren't interested in reading an article on a topic, don't choose that topic unless you want the process to be painful (and in that case you are a masochist and that's all the further we are going to discuss that matter )

~Also, while it may be tempting to do a paper on a topic you have some knowledge of already, beware- you may end up sick of it by the time you are done.

If you have any further questions, you can always utilize the Ask A Librarian feature on the Library's homepage, or you can chat with them or me on AIM. Their screen name is SRUBaileyLibrary and mine is SRUResearchGrrl.

Stay tuned for the Continuing Adventures of ResearchGrrl! and check out my MySpace profile...


Blogger Melba Tomeo said...

So, ResearchGrrl, what topic did you choose?

3:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry! I mentioned it but not as the topic that I chose. I am doing my paper on reproductive technologies and rights.


10:18 AM  
Blogger Melba Tomeo said...

Interesting! So the fetii won't be a stumbling block? There should be quite a bit of information available in popular literature (and by that I mean things like Newsweek, Time, etc.) Do you need scholarly articles too?

10:22 AM  
Blogger SRUResearchGrrl said...

I don't think the fetii should be a problem (although I'm avoiding eating eggs right now because I don't want to ingest any chicken embryos- I think that I would think too much about it and develop a complex).

I'm looking into scholarly articles on this topic. So far I've encountered a few really interesting ones. All in all, this phase is going okay. I'm really going to buckle down this weekend and show this research paper who's boss.


1:43 PM  

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