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CIS 111: Composition & Communication II: Credible Sources

This guide includes library help information specially tailored for students in CIS 111. Spring 2020

Develop a Research Topic

Once you have selected an initial topic, the next step is to think about the questions you want to ask about your topic.

  • Write down what you already know or don't know about the topic.
  • Using the information you wrote down, develop questions you'd like to answer when doing your research.
    • Use probing questions such as why? how? what if? should?
    • Avoid questions that can be answered with yes or no.

See the short video below for more tips:

Relevant and Credible Sources

Guide for Developing a Research Question

Refer to this guide as you develop your research topic. Use background information to help you understand your topic and provide context.

Identifying Keywords

Before you can begin searching for information in a print or online resource, you need to identify keywords related to your topic. Key terminology can be found easily by scanning:

  • Your initial research questions,
  • Encyclopedia and other articles used when conducting background research,
  • Bibliographies found at the end of books and articles.

If you are still struggling, then try these suggestions:

  • Use a thesaurus to identify synonyms.
  • Find pictures related to your topic, then describe the picture.
  • Brainstorm keywords with a librarian, your instructor, or a friend.