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Research Databases for Students: What is Research?

This guide empowers students, parents, and teachers with the tools and resources necessary to complete research or homework assignments utilizing library research databases and library materials effectively

What is Research?

A video describing what research is, and is not.

What Exactly IS Research?

Research is: 

  • Driven by a question or problem that then guides the process
  • Seeking information with a clear goal in mind
  • A process, which works best when done step- by-step.
    • The steps may need to be repeated.
  • Collection and interpretation of data in an attempt to resolve the problem or answer the question
  • Going beyond facts and old ideas
  • Taking a new look at the information and taking a stand

Research is not:

  • Copying and pasting information you find through a Google search
  • Combining a paragraph from one article with a couple of paragraphs from websites. That's plagiarism.
  • Writing a "report"
  • Rearranging facts
  • Rewording each phrase and citing each source. That's just a summary of facts with someone else's name on them and still can be classified as plagiarism.

Research Definition From the Oxford English Dictionary

“Google is not a synonym for research.”  
                                                          Dan Brown, The Lost Symbol

re·search

Systematic investigation or inquiry aimed at contributing to knowledge of a theory, topic, etc., by careful consideration, observation, or study of a subject. http://www.oed.com/

 

The Research Process

Conducting research is a process.  Learning some simple steps can help make your work efficient and successful. With the help of this guide, you will learn the Big 6 Research Process. This approach can help you structure your research and can be applied to any research assignment with which you are faced. View the following Prezi (created by Christine Gudowski and made available for educators) for an introduction to the Big6 and the research process.