Finding Background Information on Your Topic

It’s always a good idea to find more information about a possible topic. This is called doing background research, which helps you develop a more effective topic and brainstorm ideas for better search terms or keywords. Use these strategies for doing background research:

  • Ask your instructor for help. They understand your assignment better than anybody and can provide you with resources about how to frame your topic.
  • Use reference books like encyclopedias, which are useful for developing your topic and discovering keywords. You can search for a variety of reference works in OneSearch by searching for your topic and selecting Reference as a Content Type from the filtering options on the left side of the page.
  • Check out the library subject guides for materials and direction about specific disciplines and topics.
  • Talk to a librarian at the Research Desk on the second floor of the Knowledge Center or chat with a librarian.