WRIT 1301: University Writing

Use this guide to get started with research for WRIT 1301.

Getting started - planning and finding background info on topic

Finding Background Information

These online sources can help you to choose and refine your topic. They will also provide you with the background information and keywords and search terms. 

Tutorial: Choosing a research paper topic

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to:
  • Find ideas and language on a topic using online tools and techniques
  • Use techniques like mind mapping, the 5W’s, and freeform writing to narrow a large topic

Tutorial: Creating an effective search strategy

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to:
  • Use meaningful keywords to find the best sources
  • Apply search strategies like AND and OR to connect keywords

Use article database to find articles from academic journals, magazines, newspapers

Search and find newspapers and magazines


Guide for reading magazines, current news, commentary, and opinion

This guide is a selected collection of current journals and magazines of news, commentary, and opinion. Here is a sample of what is sometimes called 'Long form journalism" -- longer, in-depth articles written by journalists but usually about or with experts like researchers or professors. They are written with less jargon then scholarly journal articles and are great sources to consult as you learn more about a topic. They feature stories about current or controversial topics. You can "browse" and read current issues or search. 

Find statistics and public opinion

Tutorial: What does it mean to be a scholarly source?

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to:
  • Recognize a scholarly (versus a popular) source
  • Understand how a scholarly source differs from other types of sources

Citing your sources (e.g. MLA, APA, etc.)

Many article databases (e.g. Academic Search Premier, Google Scholar) will create a citation for you. After you found the item, look for "cite" or "quotes." Here are examples:

In Google Scholar:

Click the "quote" below the item in Google Scholar.

In Academic Search Premier: 

Click cite in Academic Search Premier.


Get help from the U Libraries - Online!

Review - Intro to Library Research Tutorial

After completing these tutorials, you will be able to:

  • Identify strategies for choosing a research topic
  • Search effectively
  • Identify and use a library database
  • Evaluate sources

Library research guides for current issues and topics

Doing research about current topics can challenging because the facts and stories continue to evolve. They are also impacted by the long and complex issues and histories underlying all events.  

Below are example of guides which might be helpful to you as you do research on your topic. 

Last Updated: May 24, 2022 9:31 PM