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Library Research Step-By-Step Guide: BIOL 206: Overview

A class guide for Biology 206 Spring 2020.

The Research Cycle for Literature Discovery

This guide is structured to take you through the stages of a typical research cycle:

  1. Prepare. Establish a question and requirements of your assignment. Conduct background research on the themes of your question to establish baseline knowledge and context.
  2. Search. Guided by your question and using the key concepts and terms you learned during background research, employ a range of advanced searching techniques to identify relevant scholarly resources that can help you answer your question.
  3. Evaluate. Thoroughly assess the sources you found during your literature search for quality, accuracy, and relevance to your own work.
  4. Cite. Participate in the conventions of scholarship by accurately citing all of the sources you decide to use in your final paper in an appropriate style for your field. By citing your sources, you help the cycle of research continue.

Need Any Help?

If you're struggling with anything related to this tutorial, please don't hesitate to contact me at I want to help you out in any way that I can. You can also book a Zoom or phone appointment with me here. If you need help immediately and I'm not available, you can always use the library's 24/7 chat service to get help from a librarian.

Copyright Notice

Creative Commons License
This guide, including all text and images, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Library Research Activity Outline and Expectations

This guide was created to help guide you through your literature search process for Biology 206. By following the steps, you will build a foundation of knowledge on your topic that you can use to find and evaluate resources for your paper.

There are 3 tasks associated with this guide:

  1. Complete an interactive database searching activity to learn how to make the most of advanced search skills and tools to find appropriate sources for your paper.
  2. Complete a guided worksheet to evaluate a source you're considering for your paper.
  3. Set up your RefWorks account.

If you have questions or concerns about anything in this guide, please don't hesitate to contact your librarian (me! down there!). 

STEM Specialist Librarian

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Nicole Gustavsen
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Foley Library, Office 114A

Top Resources in Related Science & Technology Fields

Please refer to the full Chemistry Research Guide for more resources, tools, and services in the fields of chemistry and biochemistry.

Please refer to the full Engineering Research Guide for more resources, tools, and services for civil, mechanical, and electrical engineering, computer science and engineering, materials science, and engineering management.

Please refer to the full Environmental Studies Research Guide for resources, tools, and services related to environmental science and environmental and sustainability policy.

Please refer to the full Mathematics Research Guide for more resources, tools, and services for mathematics research.

Please refer to the full Physics Research Guide for resources, tools, and services for research in physics.