For RHE Students
Research Help & Course Guides
- Topic development help
- Finding scholarly and popular sources and data
- Evaluating information for credibility
- Ethically using information
For Undergraduates page: research guides and other resources for you
How and where to search
- What words do people use when talking about my topic?
- What are people arguing about?
- Who cares about my topic?
Choose a place to search:
- Viewpoints are typically found in newspapers and magazines
- Data and statistics come from organizations and the government
- Scholars, academics and experts share their work in journals:
Find Articles: step-by-step tutorial
Choose and develop your topic
Use these resources to learn more about a broad topic as well as who cares about a topic and why.
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Broad topic overviews from encyclopedias.
Opposing Viewpoints in Context
Viewpoints, overviews, government and organizational statistics, biographies, court cases, newspaper and magazine articles, and web sites.
Who is the author? Is he/she an expert on the subject, a representative from a credible organization, a columnist for a newspaper? What gives the author authority to represent that side of the controversy? (ex: US Secretary of Commerce? A lawyer? A reporter for a student newspaper?)
- TIP: If there is no information on the author, try Googling that person. If the name is common one, use a keyword from the topic (ex. Rebecca Blank and Department of Commerce). Many web sites won’t have individual authors listed so ask the same questions of the organization as a whole.
Does the source (newspaper, magazine, web site) generally lean to one side of controversies (examples: liberal vs. conservative; free market economics vs. government regulated economy)?
Is this information true? If it’s a viewpoint, did they use facts to support it? Are the facts accurate? Where did they get the information? Can you find this information elsewhere to confirm its accuracy?
Is it current enough for your research?