Expos 2 students, you may not have your own Library Days like Expos I, but librarians and specialists from the Undergraduate & Community Services department still met with several class sections and we want to make sure that you know we're here to help all Engl 200 students!
So your assignment --- a persuasive paper in which you need to provide both the pro and con sides of an issue while offering a persuasive argument supporting one side and using at least three credible sources like journal articles or statistics. Sound familiar? I hope so!
So if you weren't in one of the classes we saw for library instruction, don't sweat it --- here's some of the library information we presented in a nutshell. And if you were there, here's a timely recap just in case you spaced out during class (though I know no one would ever do that!).
- In order to persuade an audience, you'll need evidence to support your main ideas. Evidence can be statistics, expert opinions, scholarly journal articles, and more. Be sure that you use credible resources --- that means written by experts in the field with authoritative credentials, heavily-cited research, and featured in a scholarly or peer-reviewed journal. Where can you find these resources, you might ask? --- the Library Databases!
- Check out our resources by going to the Library home page and clicking on Databases. Always start your research at the Library home page... why? Because then you get access to all of the journals, databases, and resources that we subscribe to exclusively for K-Staters! Here are the top two databases we suggest for your persuasive paper!
- CQ Researcher Plus Archive --- CQ stands for Congressional Quarterly. This database contains full-text reports written to inform elected officials of major U.S. issues. The reports strive to be unbiased, presenting sections like Overview, Background, Current Situation, Pro/Con, Maps/Graphs, and Bibliography. It's a great resource to get introduced to each side of your issue and to find citations for further research
- ProQuest Research Library --- This is probably a familiar database for most of you. Librarians love it because it's fairly easy to use and great for finding at least a little information on most any topic. We recommend using one search box per concept in your research topic. After clicking search, you'll find a few features that will make your research a bit easier. First there's the Suggested Topics box at the top of the screen. This looks at the keywords you used in your search as well as the results, and then provides suggestions for similar searches that might get better results. Simply click on one of the suggestions to perform a new search and then to narrow your search. The results are also broken down into tabs so you can easily choose which type of results you'd like to focus on, including scholarly journals, magazines, trade publications, and newspapers.
- Google. You can't deny it. We're a generation of Googlers. And believe it or not, it is possible to find good information using Google without getting too overwhelmed. It's just not that easy. In order to wade through all the junk out there, you have to use some shortcuts to gain more control over Google. Combine any or all of the following tricks to tame the Google beast!
- Education (.edu) and government (.gov) websites generally present more credible and unbiased information than commercial websites. To limit your search to .gov or .edu websites use the following shortcut --- site:.gov or site:.edu
- To ensure that a word is in the title of the link or the web address (URL), use the following --- intitle: or inurl:
- To search for a specific type of file like a PowerPoint or PDF, use the following shortcut --- filetype:pdf or filetype:doc or filetype:ppt
- The Engl 200 class guide --- personalized just for your class! The class guide contains an in-depth review of research tools and tips mentioned in this article and more. Tabs includes Getting Started, Evaluating Sources, Articles, Books, Statistics, Cite Sources, and K-State Libraries Resources. We highly recommend you take a look!
Well, that about wraps up our recap for Expos 2. But that doesn't mean help ends here. You're always welcome to contact us for further assistance --- you can call us, email us, IM us, and more. Check out our Ask-A-Librarian page and good luck on your assignment Engl 200 students!