It's true that research can be a messy process, but hopefully some of the tips below will help you through that process.
- Start exploring the library databases now. Pick a fun or favorite topic, and see what you find in different databases. Gaining 10 or 15 minutes of experience every day will add up and come in handy at crunch time.
- Start your topic exploration in a reference source. Sage Knowledge is great for the social sciences. Even Wikipedia can give you a good overview of complex topics. These types of sources can help you get a handle on vocabulary, important concepts, authors, and even on the organization of information on your topic.
- Don't limit yourself to just one or two databases. Realize that each database you access through the Libraries offers a different set of information. You may find quite a bit of information in WSU WorldCat, but did you know that by going beyond WSU WorldCat, you can often conduct more powerful searches?
- Don't let yourself get frustrated. Ask for help from a librarian. We can help you define topics, and pinpoint the information you need.
- Read your assignment very carefully. Understand the types of resources you need to find for it. If you have questions, ask!