Research Skills for Developing Writers: Summary & Additional Resources

An introductory guide to help multilingual undergraduate writers at the U develop their research skills.

Summary of Developing a Topic and Search Terms

   Developing your topic into a research question is an important first step to beginning your research.  They key to a good research question is narrowing your topic idea into a concise research question that is both manageable and researchable.  Using a funnel or chart graphic organizer are great ways to help you brainstorm ideas for research questions and search terms.  

   Keywords and subject terms can both be used to search for resources for your research.  Keywords are often more general and can be found anywhere in any document.  Subject terms are better for finding more relevant resources because they are controlled by the database and only search for your terms in subject headings.  If you need some help thinking of keywords or subject terms, use a thesaurus to find synonyms or talk to a librarian.  


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