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Virtual Tour of Library

This video literally walks through the CSI Library and discusses what you can do at each of our service stations on the first floor. Then we walk to the second floor and show an overview of services there. On the third floor, we discuss locating books and how to use our search tool, OneSearch. Also discussed: research questions and using our chat widget.

Using Background Information for Research

If you are writing a paper for class, you may need some basic facts about a topic in order to get started. It can be hard to know how to critically analyze a topic without knowing some background facts about your topic such as: definitions of terms, names of famous people involved in the issue, a chronology of major dates, and a general background history of what you're researching. These facts can be used in your introduction as grounding concepts, or these facts can simply ground you in your topic before you get started. We have excellent databases that can give you background information. These same databases can be used to browse for topics if you're unsure of what to write about.

Using CQ Researcher

CQ Researcher provides full text reports written by seasoned journalists about current social, political, and economic issues. Includes topics in health, education, international affairs, public policy, the environment, technology, and the economy.

Each report includes a concise overview of an issue, historical background, opposing arguments, statistics and polls, and suggestions for further reading.

This is a great place to begin research on current affairs issues. Using the browse function, you can also look for topics to write about.

Locating Reference Articles

Reference works include encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks of research, and more. A reference work is a collection of entries that you search by subject for short facts-- something you refer to but wouldn't read cover to cover. Other examples could include-- a book of recipes, a citation style guide, or a book of maps. Reference articles can give you background facts, dates, names of prominent people, a chronology of events, and more, to get you started on a topic. Here is a way to search for that kind of information using OneSearch.