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Library DIY

I Am Not Sure Where To Search

Deciding Where to Search 

What type(s) of sources might you need? 
Does your assignment recommend certain source types (e.g. peer-reviewed articles, newspaper articles, data, books, videos)? What role do sources play in the project? 

Depending on the topic, you might look for books, articles, media coverage, or other online sources.  If your topic is very new, there may not be many books or scholarly articles because scholarly works can have a long publication process. 

Who has written on/discussed your topic? 
A topic like "race relations in prisons" might be explored by scholars in sociology, law, criminal justice, public policy, psychology, or ethnic studies. Search by discipline or your academic field by using the databases and other library resources recommended in the Subject Guides.


Locating Sources

Books: Search the Libraries catalog IUCAT. For help finding books, visit Finding Books on Your Topic.

Articles: General databases such as Academic Search and ProQuest Central contains scholarly, popular, and professional journal articles from most disciplines.  These are often a good places to start your research.

Subject-Specific Research: Browse the Subject Guides or Course Guides for more specialized resources. For more guidance look at Finding Peer-Reviewed Articles.

Primary Sources: See our databases that contain Primary Sources

Newspaper Sources: Go to our databases that contain newspaper articles.

Looking for data?  Explore our Data and Statistics Research Guide and the list of databases that contain statistics. Or search Google for data on your topic. Search for "[your topic] statistics" or "[your topic] data."

Government Information: 

Still not sure where to search? Ask a Librarian!