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Beginning research for assignments
Terminology Analysing your question Different information sources ◦ When to use them ◦ Where to find them ◦ What they look like in a reading list The information cycle Starting research Where to get more help
Journals OR Serials ◦ regular publications which contain scholarly articles for academic readers ◦ Journals are published in yearly volumes ◦ Volumes are comprised of monthly or quarterly issues ◦ Each issue contains multiple articles
Peer-reviewed OR refereed journals ◦ All articles are reviewed by experts in the field before publication
Databases ◦ Searchable collections of information or data ◦ Most of our academic journals are accessible via databases ◦ Some databases contain full text (complete articles) ◦ Other databases provide just the reference and abstract (summary)
Reference ◦ A formal, detailed description of a book, journal article etc ◦ Example: Behrens, L. (2010). A sequence for academic writing. New York, N.Y.: Pearson.
In-text reference OR Citation ◦ An abbreviated reference within the body of an assignment to guide the reader to the detailed reference in the Reference List or Bibliography
Referencing style ◦ Rules for the format, punctuation & elements of references ◦ Examples: Harvard, APA
Analysing your question Before you can start your research, you need to know what you’re looking for!
Identify direction words & limiting words: ◦ direction words tell you what sort of assignment to write e.g. discuss, analyse, evaluate ◦ limiting words define the boundaries of your research e.g. 2 years, three examples, in Australia specific aspects of a topic Identify the key concepts of the question
KEY CONCEPTS ARE THE FOCUS OF YOUR RESEARCH
Discuss the impact of snow sports on alpine environments, providing case studies of at least three resort areas, each in different countries. Evaluate infrastructure, environmental and economic factors.
Circle the direction words Underline the limiting words Highlight the key concepts More info on Academic Skills Centre page
Start with background reading: ◦ What defines an ‘alpine environment’ ◦ Find three (or more) resort areas ◦ What is ‘infrastructure’ For other questions this might involve checking definitions, breaking broad terms into separate aspects etc
List different forms of your key concepts: ◦ Synonyms and related terms e.g. snow sports, winter sports, alpine sports etc.
THESE WILL BE YOUR SEARCH TERMS
THE KEY TO ACADEMIC RESEARCH: DIFFERENT TYPES OF INFORMATION ARE FOUND IN DIFFERENT SOURCES
Contain: •broad, background information
Useful for: •broad understanding of the topic
•history, development of a topic •Often just one chapter or Example of a book reference: •classic examples, theories & section of a book May, C. A., & May, G. S. (2006). Effective writing:will apply theorists a handbook for accountants (7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson Prentice Hall. Example & of an e-book reference: BOOKS E-BOOKS
Schiraldi, G. R. (2001). The post-traumatic stress disorder sourcebook: A guide to healing, recovery, and growth [Adobe Digital Editions version]. doi:10.1036/0071393722 How to find books: •Reading list in your Unit Example of a chapter reference: Outline Nicholson, N. R. (2013). Social isolation. In I. M. Lubkin & P. D. Larsen (Eds.), Chronic •Bibliography of text illness: and intervention. Burlington, book and otherimpact readings Mass.: Jones & Bartlett Learning. •Library catalogue or UCanFind
Contain: •Concise, focused information •Detailed research •Some conference papers •Case studies
Useful for: •Lending authority to your writing •Strengthening your argument •Supporting your view
•Up to date information – journals are published frequently
Examples of journal references: JOURNAL &(2005). E-JOURNAL ARTICLES Munslow, A. Getting on with history. Rethinking History, 9(4), 497-501. How to find journal articles: Fernsten, L. A., & Reda, M. (2011). Helping •Library students databases over meetindex the challenges of academic 40,000 journals writing. Teaching in Higher Education, 16(2), 171-182. to doi:10.1080/13562517.2010.507306 •Use UCanFind search broadly across all databases • Select Subject Guides on the Library page to search specific databases
Contain: •Immediate, breaking news •Current affairs
Useful for: •Local information
•Advertising trends •Economic information
Examples of news source •Politics references: NEWS SOURCES issues Waterford, J. (2007, May•Social 30). Bill of Rights gets it wrong. The Canberra Times, p. 11. How to find news & current affairs: Funding changes unlikely to affect •Print copiesNorth of major daily Coast TAFE (2012, October newspapers 25). in Library ABC News. Retrieved from http://www.abc.net.au/news •Limit results to Newspaper Articles in UcanFind •Specialised databases listed on the Subject Guides page
Contain: Useful for: •Some scholarly, professional information •Quick, easy searching •Many sites for children or general public •Current, popular information – not appropriate for academic use •Images, maps, logos etc •Always important to evaluate information carefully
Example of web site reference: WEB RESOURCES •MacIsaac, D. (1995). An introduction to action research. Retrieved from http://physicsed.buffalostate. edu/danowner/actionrsch.html
How to find scholarly web sites: •Library Subject Guides list selected sites for each area of study •Use links from professional organisations and Government departments
THE INFORMATION CYCLE There is also a time factor in information sources Let’s look at the information cycle, using the 20072009 Global Financial Crisis as an example
The information cycle WITHIN HOURS
HOURS TO DAYS
WEEKS TO MONTHS
MONTHS TO YEARS
Eye witness accounts, public reaction
Comment, official statements
Causes, impacts & more details
Research on particular aspects
Websites, radio,TV, social media
Detailed research & long term impacts
Newspapers, other news sources
Look at the references and questions: ◦ References: What type of source is this a reference to? ◦ Questions: What type of source would you use to find information on this topic?
Handy hints: ◦ Remember the distinctive features for each type of reference ◦ Ask for help if you need it – we want you to help you get them all right!
What type of information source is each reference describing? Diani, G. (2012). Text and corpus work, EAP writing, and language learners. In R. Tang (Ed.), Academic writing in a second or foreign language (pp. 87-106). London: Continuum.
Dooley, M. D., Payne, A. A., & Robb, A. L. (2012). Persistence and academic success in University. Canadian Public Policy, 38(3), 315339. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.canberra.edu.au/login?url=http://search.ebscohost .com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=80379636&site=ehostlive Satariano, W. A. (2012). Mobility and Aging. American Journal of Public Health, 102(8), 1508-1515. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2011.300631
The sprint to election day. (2012, October 26). New York Times, 32.
Sword, H. (2012). Stylish academic writing. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
United Nations Environment Programme. (2012).The global garbage crisis: no time to waste. Retrieved November 7, 2012, from http://www.unep.org /newscentre/Default.aspx?DocumentID=2698&ArticleID=9317&l=e n
What type of information source would you use to find the following information?
…detailed research comparing recovery times for sports injuries treated by acupuncture or by physiotherapy
…results of football matches played in a small country town
…the current organisational structure at BHP
…research into cell death and neurological disorders
…the history of primary school teacher training in Australia
…clinical trials of two new drugs for the treatment of arthritis
Start research on the Library page Use UCanFind to search broadly across journal databases and catalogue
Your lecturer may have some readings listed on E-Reserve, use the …more link to go to E-Reserve
Search UC Library catalogue for known titles, specific items Search Subject Guides for specialised databases & other resources on more complex topics
Register online for training sessions, or view online tutorials Use UC Referencing Guide for correct referencing
For more help… Help is always available LIBRARY
Ask a Librarian online: • Ask a question by email • Online chat 10.303.30 Monday-Friday In person: • Research Assistance Desk • Level B of the Library
Phone: • 62015082
ACADEMIC SKILLS CENTRE
SMARTHINKING ONLINE TUTORIALS
In person • ASC Rovers in the Library or Student Commons
Access via Moodle: • Have your writing reviewed within 24 hours
• Have your writing reviewed at a drop in session or an individual appointment
• Chat online with a live tutor
• Phone: 62012205 for an appointment
• Schedule to chat with a specialised tutor
• Send a tutor an academic question