About Ryan Library
This is the "Introduction" page of the "How to do Research" guide.
Alternate Page for Screenreader Users
Skip to Page Navigation
Skip to Page Content
Use this page as a starting point for writing research papers, preparing a speech, creating a group presentation, or any other research-based assignment.
Last Updated: Jun 3, 2014 URL: http://libguides.pointloma.edu/Research Print Guide RSS Updates

Introduction Print Page
  Search: 
 
 

Introduction

The purpose of this guide is to provide an overview of the research process.

The process outlined will demonstrate how to find sources for a research paper or project.  Specifically, you will learn how to find books, full-text articles, and useful internet sites. 

The information provided by this guide is an introduction to the research process.  It should not be viewed as a substitute for individual assistance on any topic. 

PLNU Reference Librarians are available to help with any research questions you may have.  You can contact us via:

 

Ask a Librarian

Need help? Ask us!

Text us: (619) 592-8884

Email us  

 

All LibGuides at PLNU

 

Ryan Library Website

The Ryan Library website is your portal to all of your library research.

We suggest making a bookmark for the main Ryan Library page.

 

Feeling Scholarly?

 

Before you Begin

Before you begin your research, you should:

  1. Think about what types of information you think you will need to find. 
  2. Decide what type of source would be the best place to find that type of information.

Here are some examples:

Type of information Where to find it
News
  • newspapers (see Step 3)
  • websites from news organizations (see Step 4)
  • databases (see Step 3)
Information about a specific organization/company
  • websites (see Step 4)
  • company profiles (see Step 3)
Research article
  • scholarly journals (see Step 3)
Personal accounts
  • magazines (see Step 3)
  • news articles (see Step 3)
  • blogs (see Step 4)
Statistics 
  • websites (see Step 4)
  • scholarly journals (see Step 3)
History, overview, definitions (scholarly)
  • subject encyclopedias (see Step 1)
  • books (see Step 2)
History, overview (popular)
  • magazines (see Step 3)
  • books (see Step 2)
 

Annotated Bibliography Assignment - College Compostion

This assignment will be distributed to all College Composition classes during their first Library Research Instruction Session.  A copy of the assignment is provided here for convenience, as well as a copy of a sample paper.

 

Choosing a Topic

Choosing and refining a topic is an important part of the research process.  One valuable resource for looking for topics is CQ Researcher, one of our Reference Databases.  This reputable periodical explores in-depth one current and relevant issue every week.  Since the database goes back to 1923, looking at the topics covered can give you some ideas for topics. Keep in mind that many times your topic will need to fit specific criteria assigned by your professor.

Once inside CQ Researcher, click on one of these two links in the column on the left:

  • Browse by Topic
  • Index
 

Read more about it in St. Martin's Handbook

PLNU's College Composition courses use the 7th Edition of the St. Martin's Handbook as a guide to research.

Read Chapter 11 for an introduction to the research process.

Need Adobe Reader?

In order to view a pdf document, your computer may need the latest free download from Adobe Reader.

Description

Loading  Loading...

Tip