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Communication 300.6

Persuasive Communication Research Guide

What is Academic Research?

Research is an attempt to answer a question. That may be something simple, as "when is the latest Marvel movie going to be released?". Or more complex, like "how has social media influenced the way social movements are organized?".  To answer your questions you will need to consult different sources, including books, academic papers, newspaper articles, primary documents, or the latest Marvel teaser on Youtube. 

When undertaking Academic Research, you will need to investigate a topic from multiple perspectives (from various sources). You will then use all of the sources that you have found to craft an argument using your own words and from your own perspective.

Google vs Library

Why can't I just Google it? 

The amount of information that Google has put at our finger tips is nothing short of extraordinary. Yet the sheer volume of information Google provides, and how they organize that information can present serious issues when using Google for research. 

  • Biases/filter bubbles
  • Quality of sources
  • Pay walls 

What about Google Scholar?

Google Scholar searches academic resources for materials scholarly in nature, including;  articles, theses, books, abstracts and court opinions, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other web sites.  Google Scholar is a good place to search once you have a good grasp of your topic and the sources you need. However, it is important to recognize that Google Scholar also has some limitations. 

  • Academic not Scholarly source types
  • No good way to narrow results
  • Access still granted through the Library - DO NOT PAY FOR ARTICLES

Why use the Library? 

Library database are designed to help you find scholarly information.

  • Organized for Scholarship
  • Content reviewed 
  • Free to you