Skip to main content

Paideia 112 Research Unit

Reading to Start your Research

Start your research process by doing background reading in your research area.  Such reading is important because it can provide:

  • a good overview of the subject matter
  • facts related to your topic -- terminology, dates, events, history, and names or organizations.
  • key words and concepts related to your topic, which can be used to search for sources.

To find background information, look at:

  • your section's common text
  • dictionaries
  • general encyclopedias
  • subject-specific encyclopedias  
  • article databases
  • primary sources.

Recommended resources for your topic are linked from the Home tab of this guide. If you can't find an encyclopedia, dictionary or article on your topic, try using broader keywords or ask a librarian for help.

Use Step 2. Locate Sources for more help on finding sources.

Content © Luther College Library and Information Services, 700 College Drive, Decorah, IA 52101 (563) 387-1166 Creative Commons License