Keeley Library Student Pages:
Information Gathering, Summarizing

Gathering Information

First Steps

Brainstorm all possible resources that might be used to address the topic:
  • Books
  • Experiments
  • Internet
  • Interviews
  • Newspapers
  • Journals
  • Reference Materials
  • Surveys
  • etc.
Brainstorm those resources that might be appropriate for the topic.
persuasive essays,
and other projects involving varying viewpoints,
newspapers, and
web sites on specific issues
Pursue variety
Don't limit research to only one kind of resource.

Prepare your search
Write down key words that might be used before you begin your research.

Consider the Source

  • Determine the authorship for all resources. Is the author an expert? Is the author trustworthy?
  • Identify points of agreement and disagreement among sources.
  • Evaluate information for stereotyping, prejudice, and misrepresentation.
  • Distinguish among fact, opinion, point of view, and inference.
  • Evaluate graphic images for misleading presentation and manipulated data.
  • Retain only appropriate material.

Be Selective

  • Question others. Listen actively.
  • Read for significant details and concepts.
  • View images, etc. for significant details and concepts.
  • Extract appropriate details and concepts.
  • Analyze information relative to your needs.
  • Select information clearly related to the problem or question.

Be Efficient

Read information and write down notes on note cards or copy and paste the information using software such as Inspiration. This is usually the best method if you are working on a large project, such as a research report or PowerPoint presentation.
See: Note-Taking
Print out or photocopy selected information and then use a pencil or highlighter to highlight the most important parts. Save information to disk, and then change the text color of the important information. This can later be copied into digital note cards using software such as Inspiration. Copy selected information directly into a word processor as you are reading the document. Be certain to give proper credit.
See: Documenting sources

Internet Resources

Library Catalog

To locate items in the library catalog, search in iBistro. You may want to limit your search to search only the Keeley Library, instead of all of the SAILS libraries.

SAILS Databases

As members of SAILS, Durfee students and teachers can access journal and newspaper articles as well as online reference books, from the library's computers and from home. Simply go to the online catalog page, access the online catalog, and click on Online Resources button.

Selected Reference Books

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Last Updated: June 18, 2008