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Prof. Boylan - Eng 101 - Fall 2023: Search Plan

How to begin? Plan! Plan! Plan!

Use the attached Research Roadmap as a planning tool as you get organized for research.
Questions to consider in the planning process:
1. What am I looking for?
What are the big ideas that interest me?
What do I already know about these ideas?
What do I want/need to learn about these ideas to be confident in discussing and arguing about them in your paper?

What search terms are likely to be useful in locating potentially useful articles?
What library databases are best suited to this search?

2. Which and where are the BEST sources?
Who are the experts on/about these ideas?
Would it be useful to read some background/foundational information on the general topic?
Where am I likely to find more information so I can become more deeply knowledgeable about the topic(s)?

How will I evaluate sources to be sure they are credible, accurate, relevant and timely?



Research Template for Issues

Identify the aspects of the large concept (idea) that are RELEVANT to your search right now. Use these RELEVANT aspects to give you search terms (keywords) and to help you stay on track throughout your search process.

Research template or model for controversial issues

Remember that for your assignment you want to learn about this topic but you have limits.

  • There is a due date that limits the time you can spend gathering, understanding, and absorbing information about the topic.
  • There are space considerations including how many pages you have in which to express yourself, your ideas and the results of your research.
  • Other assignment requirements may include how many and what types of sources you must use.

For all these reasons, it is important to identify the relevant aspects of the larger topic that most interest you, that you will emphasize in your work.

Bias Line

Every author/creator has a purpose in writing or creating their content. Use this tool to reflect upon an author/creator's point of view.

Bias line diagram

As a research, you will encounter - you should seek out - some of the various points of view on your chosen topic. As you consider each potential source, be open to uncovering the author's point of view on the topic. While you want to find evidence to support your point of view, the case you are making in support of your thesis, it is also important to seek out other points of view.
Remember: people differ in how strongly they feel about an idea or topic.
Remember: people can differ in their reasons for the way they feel about and think about a topic or idea.

Find the reasons people share for how and why they feel the way they feel!

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