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Research: How - Information Literacy Toolbox: Library Tutorials

Find tutorials on navigating the library website, resources for your research journey through searching, evaluating, & citing, and subject specific guides & databases

Module 1: Introduction to Library Research

Starting Your Research

When starting your research, it is important to identify what kind of information you will need. 

  • The information timeline will help determine where your research topic fits in the cycle of information.
  • This chart shows the timeline starting with an event and ending with publications of books and peer-reviewed articles.

Types of Sources Tutorial

  • Complete the tutorial on the five general categories of source types including traditional scholarly sources, gray literature, trade journals, non-traditional research sources, and everyday sources

Types of Sources Video

  • Watch this short video to understand how to select a resource appropriate for your information need, the importance of analyzing a resource’s capabilities and constraints, and how to determine if a resource has quality information

Types of Sources Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

FIU Libraries: The Find Menu

Is there another place I can go to find the database list or other kinds of materials for my research? How do I find out which subject librarian I should contact? Where can I find the option to run advanced searches? Follow along as an FIU Librarian shows you how to find these options and more!

Background Research Tutorial

  • This tutorial will highlight how background research is an essential part of developing a focused topic for your research paper. Conducting background research before you decide on your topic paves the way for more effective and targeted in-depth research.

Thesis Statement Video

  • Throughout this video, we’ll outline ways in which you can construct a strong thesis statement by narrowing and focusing your topic, formulating a thesis statement, and developing a “working thesis.”

Thesis Statement Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

More from the Library

Module 3: Building Effective Search Strategies

Framing a Problem Video

  • This video will help you to formulate your question to establish the purpose of your research so that you will know exactly what you are looking for.

Choosing & Using Keywords Tutorial

  • Complete this tutorial to learn why identifying keywords is important, how to select key concepts from a research question, and ways to identify useful keywords.

Choosing & Using Keywords Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

From McMaster University's Health Science Library

Search Techniques Tutorial, Part 1

  • Complete this tutorial to learn how you can master searching library resources—starting with choosing keywords, then putting them together to retrieve accurate results.

Search Techniques Tutorial, Part 2

  • While every database is different, there are helpful tricks that can improve your search results in almost any database. This tutorial will cover full-text searching, field searching, subject searching and thesaurus, truncation/wildcard, and limiting your search.

Search Techniques Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

From the University of Minnesota Libraries

 

FIU Libraries: Discovery

What does that big search box on the top of library.fiu.edu do? How can you use it to conduct your research? Explore these topics and more in this video all about our Discovery Search Portal.

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Module 5: Using Information Responsibly

Why Citations Matter Tutorial

  • In this tutorial you will learn why citing sources is important. Professors ask you to incorporate resources into your paper to back up your ideas with authority. Citations enhance your argument and provide support for your ideas.

What is Plagiarism Video

  • This video will discuss the different types of plagiarism and how to avoid it in your own writing.

Academic Integrity Video

  • Throughout this video, we’ll define plagiarism and ethical behavior, recognize that acting with academic integrity stems from an understanding that information has value, and appreciate scholarship as an academic conversation.

Academic Integrity Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

Examples of Plagiarism include:

  • Copying text from a website and pasting it in your paper without using quotation marks and giving credit to the original source.

  • Buying or using someone's paper and saying it is your own.

  • Rewording or rephrasing someone else's words without giving credit to the original source.

What happens if you are caught plagiarizing?

You might

  • Fail the assignment

  • Fail the course

  • Be expelled from FIU

How can you avoid plagiarism?

Cite your Sources by:

  • Summarizing: Use your own words to compose a summary of the main ideas of another work, but cite the source material.

  • Paraphrasing: Restate the source material in your own phrases and words, but cite the source material.

  • Quoting: If you are unable to summarize or paraphrase then you can use quotations. Direct quotations are taken word for word from the original source and enclosed in quotation marks or in block quotes, followed by a citation of the source.

MLA vs APA

Anatomy of a Journal Article Citation APA 7

APA 7th Edition

Anatomy of a Journal Article Citation MLA 8

Paraphrasing, Quoting, & Summarizing Tutorial

  • This tutorial will help you to learn about the three basic modes of presenting evidence and ideas from other sources: in direct quotations, through paraphrasing, or by summarizing

Cite Your Sources Auto-Magically

Choose the right reference manager. There are so many reference management programs available. Which one will do what you need it to do? We will compare the features of RefWorks, EndNote, Zotero, and Mendeley.

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Module 2: Accessing Scholarly Databases

Use this table to find the why and where of finding different types of sources.

Resource Type

Where to Find

Characteristics

Books

Catalog

Can take years to write and publish; Not very current; Helpful for background information and context.

Scholarly Journals

Use databases to find articles on a topic; Use the catalog to locate a journal title.

Articles are reviewed by professors and other scholars (called "peer-review"); Can take a long time to review, but are usually more current than books; Helpful for finding research studies and for topics of academic interest.

Newspapers & Popular Magazines

General databases such as Academic Search Complete & ProQuest

Not peer-reviewed; Not based on extensive research studies; Very current; Helpful for learning about the latest general-interest news and events.

Blog, Twitter, Facebook

General Search Engine like Google

Quick fast information on an event that just happened.  Lots of speculation; information needs to be verified.

FIU Libraries: Research: Start

Where should you go to begin your research? What are some good general databases to use? Where can I go to develop my topic a little more? Let us introduce you to the FIU Libraries' Research: Start portal!

Peer Review Video

  • Watch this video on Peer Review. Each resource you use in your academic, professional, and personal careers will have a different standard of quality. In academia, peer-reviewed articles are referred to as the “gold standard” for research papers. This is because they are the best source for original research in a field. Throughout this video, you’ll learn what peer review is and why it’s important, how the peer review process works, and how to locate peer-reviewed articles.

Peer Review Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

Evaluation Information Tutorial

  • This tutorial will cover the 5 ways to evaluate a resource. These include: Who, What, When, How, & Why?

Evaluating Information Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

More from the Library

Module 4: Identifying Primary & Secondary Resources

From Clark State Library

Sources by Subject

Primary & Secondary Sources Video

  • In this video, we are going to define primary, secondary, and tertiary sources, and then show specific examples of them moving from primary, secondary, and tertiary classifications.

Primary & Secondary Sources Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

How to Read Scholarly Materials Tutorial

  • This tutorial will explore learning to read scholarly materials as an important part of your academic experience.

The Research Process Video:

This video will introduce you to the purpose of research and present strategies to successfully begin your research journey.

Data, Information, & Knowledge Video

  • You may have heard the terms data, information, and knowledge used in relation to one another, but what exactly does each one mean? Although they are all associated concepts, this video will explain the differences between them and examples of each; how these concepts relate to one another; and how to apply critical thinking to find, use, and record data, information, and knowledge. 

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Module 6: Academic Writing & Critical Thinking

Synthesizing Information for Academic Writing Tutorial

  • In this tutorial, you will familiarize yourself with how to incorporate information synthesis in steps throughout your research process and apply the principles of information synthesis.

Synthesizing Information for Academic Writing Quiz

  • Take the quiz
  • Email results to your professor if needed

Do you need to send a quiz to your professor? Follow these steps

Step 1. Complete Quiz

Step 2. Click "Get Scores"

Step 3. Enter your Professor's email

Step 4. Click "Email My Results"

Anatomy of a Research Paper Video

  • This video will teach you about the correct structure of a research paper. Once you’ve finished watching, you’ll know what information goes where and how you should format your paper.

Research Paper Timeline

Academic Writing Video

  • Any academic experience is an opportunity for you to participate in the broad scholarly conversation. Watch this video to learn more about how your work contributes to this wider discussion.

From the University of Sussex

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