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COMM218 Williams

Find scholarly sources for your research paper, regarding an aspect of culture and interpersonal communication.

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Contact the CCC Writing Center for help with:

  • Thesis statements
  • Research papers
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  • Grammar/punctuation
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  • Cover letters
  • Job applications

Phone  503-594-6275
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Organize your research paper

As you gather and read information about your topic, collect citations and take notes about your sources in this downloadable article matrix. Use the article matrix to identify the themes written about in your articles. Once your matrix is filled out, you can easily see how different authors’ ideas relate to other authors’ ideas, and you can synthesize them in your writing.

But I want a print handout...

If electronic is not your thing, that's OK! You can print a copy of this course guide. Here's how:

  1. Look at the bottom of this page. Find print page icon
  2. Select print page icon
  3. A print dialog box will pop up, allowing you to print this guide.

Using Permanent Links

Permanent links are just that – permanent, unbreakable links to database and catalog items. Adding permanent links to online resources in your Moodle course makes it easy to connect your students to relevant, academic material. Permanent links are also called persistent links, permalinks, Title URLs, Stable URLs, and sometimes just URL.

It cam be tempting to use the link at the top of your browser window, but in nearly every case this link is not permanent and your students will not be able to access the item. Finding the permanent link can be difficult, so if you are unsure of how to find them, contact a librarian. Below is resource specific advice.  

  • Articles from a database 
    • Gale databases (Academic OneFile, Gale Virtual Reference, Opposing Viewpoints, and 27 others)
      • Gale no longer provides a separate permanent URL. Instead it is  embedded into the citation at the bottom of the page. 
        • Step 1: Find article that you want to share with students
        • Step 2: Find citation at bottom of page 
        • Step 3: Find embedded link within the citation (see example below)
        • Step 4: Copy and paste into link creator in Moodlecitation example with permalink highlighted in the middle of the citation
    • Ebsco databases (Academic Source Complete, CINAHL, Business Source Complete and 21 others)
      • Step 1: Find article that you want to share with students
      • Step 2: Find Permalink icon permalink icon located in the item's record in the far right-hand column.
      • Step 3: Copy and paste into link creator in Moodle
      • Note: when looking at an Ebsco ebook the Permalink icon may be located on the bar above the opened ebook. Click on the three dots to open more options. 
    • ProQuest Ebook Central
      • Step 1: Select the title of the item
      • Step 2: Select permalink icon located on the icon bar above the opened ebook. 
      • Step 3: Copy and paste into link creator in Moodle

Google like a librarian

We all use it - now let's learn to use it better! Improving your Googling skills will save you time and make it easier to identify better sources of information. Tips and tricks are explained below.

  1. Use quotation marks around your search terms to search for the words in the exact order you would like, instead of separately.

Google - "quotation marks"

  1. Use intitle: to retrieve webpages with your keywords in the title of the webpage

Google - intitle: search

  1. Use site:. to retrieve webpages from URLs in the domain (.gov, .edu, .org) you specify.  

Google - site:. search

  1. Use - (a hyphen or minus sign) in front of words to exclude them from your search results.

Google - NOT

  1. Use OR in between words to have either or both of the words included in your search results. OR must be capitalized. This is a good way to search for synonyms.

Google - OR
In the above example, Google will find results that include (election AND fraud) and (voter AND fraud).

  1. Use filetype: to retrieve specific types of files (instead of html webpages). Works for finding most file types.

filetype: search

  1. Use several strategies at once for very specific results.

Google - all of the above search strategies!

Filter to the right topic/subject database

This tip will help you find an article in our topic-specific EBSCO and/or Gale databases. If we don't have your exact topic, choose the closest related subject, or use the databases Academic OneFile or Academic Search Complete.

Filter to the right topic/subject database

  1. Go to CCC Library's A-Z Database list.
  2. Select the dropdown menu All Subjects.
  3. Select your subject from the list.
  4. The resulting list of databases will be specialized to your subject. Look for those that say Best Bet.
    • Bonus: Limit the databases to those that have professional, peer-reviewed journals by also using the All Database Types dropdown menu; select Scholarly/Academic Journals.

A-Z Databases subject dropdown menu and database type menu

What is an annotated bibliography?

An annotated bibliography is a list of citations to books, articles, and documents. Each citation is followed by a brief (usually about 150 words) descriptive and evaluative paragraph, the annotation. The purpose of the annotation is to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy, and quality of the sources cited.

Annotations vs. Abstracts

Abstracts are the purely descriptive summaries often found at the beginning of scholarly journal articles. Annotations are descriptive and critical; they may describe the author's point of view, authority, or clarity and appropriateness of expression.

Process of creating an Annotated Bibliography

First, locate and record citations to books, periodicals, and documents that may contain useful information and ideas on your topic. Briefly examine and review the actual items. Then choose those works that provide a variety of perspectives on your topic.

Cite the book, article, or document using the appropriate style.

Write a concise annotation that summarizes the central theme and scope of the book or article. Include one or more sentences that:

  • evaluate the authority or background of the author;
  • comment on the intended audience;
  • compare or contrast this work with another you have cited; and,
  • explain how this work illuminates your bibliography topic.

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 Annotated bibliography content created by Research & Learning Services, Olin Library, Cornell University Library, Ithaca, NY, USA.

Example of annotated bibliographies - APA6

The following example uses APA style (Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th edition, 2010) for the journal citation:

Waite, L. J., Goldschneider, F. K., & Witsberger, C. (1986). Nonfamily living and the erosion of traditional family orientations among young adults. American Sociological Review, 51(4), 541-554. doi:10.2307/2095586

The authors, researchers at the Rand Corporation and Brown University, use data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Young Women and Young Men to test their hypothesis that nonfamily living by young adults alters their attitudes, values, plans, and expectations, moving them away from their belief in traditional sex roles. They find their hypothesis strongly supported in young females, while the effects were fewer in studies of young males. Increasing the time away from parents before marrying increased individualism, self-sufficiency, and changes in attitudes about families. In contrast, an earlier study by Williams cited below shows no significant gender differences in sex role attitudes as a result of nonfamily living.

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 Annotated bibliography content created by Research & Learning Services, Olin Library, Cornell University Library, Ithaca, NY, USA.

What are Boolean operators?

Boolean operators are words that we use to link two or more keywords while searching. Linking your keywords with the words AND, OR, and NOT help to expand or narrow the results you get while searching.

AND

  • AND tells the catalog or database you are searching in that you are requiring both terms to be in your results. Linking two keywords with the word AND ensures that all of your search results have keyword #1 AND keyword #2.
  • Use this Boolean operator when you are comparing, contrasting, or otherwise relating two keywords!
  • Example: "peanut butter"  AND jelly 
    • Will only show me results that contain both peanut butter AND jelly, because I want both of them.

OR

  • OR tells the catalog or database you are searching in that you are okay with either keyword (or both keywords) appearing in your search results. Linking two keywords with the word OR ensure that all results with have either keyword #1 OR keyword #2 OR both.
  • Use this operator to link synonyms (words that mean the same thing). 
  • Example: jelly OR jam
    • Will return results that include jelly, jam, and jelly and jam. This is because these words are interchangeable and I'm okay with seeing results with either word.

NOT

  • NOT  tells the catalog or database you are searching in that you only want results containing one keyword, but NOT the other. Linking two keywords with the word NOT will only return results containing keyword #1 but NOT keyword #2.
  • Use this Boolean operator when you have noticed that searching for keyword #1 also returns results about keyword #2, but that is not what you are looking for.
  • Example: jelly NOT grape
    • Will return results that contain jelly, but NOT results that contain grape, because I'm not looking for information on grape jelly.

Set of three Venn diagrams showing the relationship between keywords when AND, OR, and NOT are used in a search.

Image credit: Slippery Rock University

Example of annotated bibliographies - MLA8

This example uses MLA style (MLA Handbook, 8th edition, 2016) for the journal citation:

Waite, Linda J., et al. "Nonfamily Living and the Erosion of Traditional Family Orientations Among Young Adults." American Sociological Review, vol. 51, no. 4, 1986, pp. 541-554, doi:10.2307/2095586.

The authors, researchers at the Rand Corporation and Brown University, use data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Young Women and Young Men to test their hypothesis that nonfamily living by young adults alters their attitudes, values, plans, and expectations, moving them away from their belief in traditional sex roles. They find their hypothesis strongly supported in young females, while the effects were fewer in studies of young males. Increasing the time away from parents before marrying increased individualism, self-sufficiency, and changes in attitudes about families. In contrast, an earlier study by Williams cited below shows no significant gender differences in sex role attitudes as a result of nonfamily living.

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 Annotated bibliography content created by Research & Learning Services, Olin Library, Cornell University Library, Ithaca, NY, USA.

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