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Information Literacy

This guide will help students to understand what information is useful for their research papers, as well as provide a step-by-step guide for the use of that information.

Ready, Set, Go!


When the thesis statement is chosen, start gathering articles.  Make sure there are enough full-text articles to support the argument. Follow the professor’s guidelines for number of articles.

  • Remember to be specific!
  • Use the “Advanced Search” feature: choose “Advanced Search” and use the limiters to choose specific terms, limit search results to full text and scholarly articles, and even exclude certain results that may not be helpful.
  • Ask A Librarian service is available!  You can also set up an appointment with a librarian!
  • After articles are located, open each and skim over the contents to ensure that the article supports the thesis statement. Articles that are opposed to the subject may also be helpful in creating counterpoints.
  • Use the options at the top of the page to save resources in a convenient format, as well as to get citation information.


Please ask for help!  

Getting Organized

Once you have found the information you'd like to use, make sure that you read and understand your sources. You may want to go through and make passages that stood out to you, or that would make good quotes. 

Refine your information -- if you find that you have repetitive information in several articles, see if there are chunks of unique information worth saving, or if you need 3 sources that say the exact same thing. 

Organize your information to appear in the order that makes sense to your paper -- how do you want this information to flow? Can you answer the Who, What, Where, Why, When, and How questions? Is the instructor requiring specific information be included, or certain questions that must be addressed in the assignment? 


Roger Smith CEO American Income Life Get Organized