|Arrows pointing down to narrower and narrower topics||Questions to Ask||Sources to Use|
|Narrower topic||Who? Can you identify a person or group of people that are involved in your research topic?||I am interested in how artists portray el Día de los Muertos||Background and reference sources|
|Even narrower topic||What? What is the key idea of your topic? What are the sub-topics?||I am interested in the use of images in el Día de los Muertos traditions||Books containing overviews (aka General Histories)|
|Narrow and specific topic||When? Is time an important factor in your topic? Do you need current or historical research?||I am interested in the origins of the portrayal of la Catrina||Scholarly Journal Articles|
|Even more ore narrow and specific topic||Where? Is geography important to your research topic? Can you find information on a region or do you need information about one specific place?||(Mexico)||News and other Primary Sources|
How does José Guadalupe Posada initial portrayal of lower-class women in Mexico through la Catrina imagery connect to contemporary traditions for el Día de los Muertos?""
Guiding you through a Research Process
Research can be messy. Each research question requires different approaches, so be prepared to skip around between steps and even add other steps as needed.
Start with a research question
Gather background info to develop your topic
Learn search techniques
Use search tools to find information
Read and evaluate what you find
Organize, write, and cite your research
Tip! If your search results don't help you answer your research question, go back to a previous step and try another strategy. Research is an iterative process that can be both frustrating and rewarding!
This research guide is organized around these 6 steps of the research process, so follow the tabs from left to right to learn how to carry out each step. >>>
|Journal articles detailing original research||Books (except fiction & autobiographies)|
|Newspaper articles written at the time||Histories|
|Oral & video recordings||Journal articles (depending on the discipline these can be primary)|
|Original documents (e.g., birth certificate, trial transcripts)||Literature Reviews|
|Photgraphs||Magazine and Newspaper Articles (this distinction varies by discipline)|
|Records of organizations, government agencies (e.g., annual report, treaty, constitution)|
|Survey Research (e.g., market surveys, public opinion polls)|
|Works of art, architecture, literature, and music)|
|Data, Statistics, etc.||
|research projects, methodology, and theory||Contents||personalities, news, and general interest articles|
|subject experts||Authors||journalists and generalists|
|academic institutions||Affiliation||staff or freelance writers|
|highly focused, geared towards researchers and professionals||Topics||more generalized, geared towards nonprofessionals|
|peer-reviewed (usually)||Review Process||edited but not peer-reviewed|
|many have dull covers||Appearance||glossy, eye-catching covers|
|few or none||Advertisements||many|
|Journal of Food Science, Urban Studies, Journal of Applied Psychology, Annals of Human Genetics||Examples||People, New York Times, Psychology Today, Time|
Using Chinook Classic
1. Lean what the AND and OR do to your searches. If you’re not sure, test them out by putting one at a time between two different words: cat AND dog; cat OR dog
2. Brainstorm some keywords, then brainstorm some more. The keywords (or phrases) you use in your searches might not be the same terms or concepts authors and academics use, so it’s helpful to have other keywords (synonyms or related words) to try.
3. Put your keywords together with AND, OR, and in some cases, NOT to create logical search statements. Hint: There is a logic behind how these special words operate.
Another hint: put any commonly used or special phrases into quotation marks. For example: “medio ambiente” “carte blanche” or “market value”
Graphic prepared by Bronwen K. Maxson for educational purposes only
1. Takes 0-1+ Days. Start with OneSearch and Chinook to locate resources we own or subscribe to [links to OneSearch and Chinook]. Chinook finds physical materials and subscriptions and OneSearch finds all that and more!
If the University of Colorado doesn't have what you're looking for, try these regional library systems next:
2. Takes 3-5+ Days. [links to Prospector and Mobius]. Prospector finds materials held in Colorado & Wyoming libraries. Mobius locates many additional items in Missouri libraries.
Still not finding what you need? Use WorldCat to search libraries worldwide, then borrow them via Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad):
3. Takes 7-10+ Days. [Links to WorldCat and ILLiad system]. WorldCat searches participating library catalogs from across the globe. Submit your requests through ILLiad
Still not finding what you need? Contact your Subject Librarian to suggest a purchase [Link to CU Subject Librarian Directory]