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UGS 303: Spectacle as a Political Tool / Sanchez

Get Started with your Research

Beginning the Research Process

Make sure you understand your research assignment! Look for key details such as the following:

  • Number of sources required
  • Types of sources required
  • Type of final product (think about what you're producing)

Start by brainstorming some potential topics to explore further.

  • Look through your syllabus or textbook for themes, concepts, or ideas that interest you, even if you haven't covered them in class yet.
  • Search the topic or name of your course in Google or a library article database. Check out any results that look interesting.
  • Think about your major or your hobbies. Do any of your personal interests overlap with the topic of the class?
  • Explore the news and current events. 


Now that you have a potential topic in mind think about what information you need, and where you can find it.

  • What questions do you want to explore with your research? 
  • What types of sources and information do you need?
    • Data, scholarly articles, a news source, etc.
  • Where might you find the information you need?
    • A specific database, a book, etc.



Finally, you'll need to test out your topic and see if you need to scope it. Test your topic by running some searches online and conducting background research. 

  • Too broad - if you found too many results when testing the topic, you might need to choose a specific aspect to focus on. Try looking for particular details that you can focus on for your assignment. 
  • Too narrow - if you had trouble finding any relevant information, think more broadly about the topic and what interests you. What are the larger concepts or ideas that your topic falls under?

Picking Your Topic is Research

Video via NCSU LibrariesEdited to add UT Libraries information. Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States license. 

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