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S W 310 - Introduction to Social Work and Social Welfare

Population and Problem Area

Introduction to Population and Problem Area

For your Cultural Diversity Research Paper, you will need to start out with an introduction to the overall problem area. This will include statistics related to your chosen population. This type of information often comes from background sources rather than peer-reviewed journal articles. Background information comes from things like book and/or Encyclopedia entries on a topic, government-gathered statistics (like the U.S. Census), and sometimes news articles from credible sources. This page will walk you through the best places to get started with information for the introduction portion of your paper.

Why Find Background Information?

Background information provides a general overview of a research topic including important terms and concepts, relevant names of people or places, and dates of specific events.

These resources are especially helpful during the idea generation stage. Finding good background information on a general topic can help you turn that topic into a research question.

They will also help you determine what vocabulary and background concepts you will need to identify relevant peer-reviewed sources in the databases and identify more specific areas of your topic that you may want to research further.

Recommended Resources

Statistical information is a great way to get a sense of the magnitude, or scope of the problem. Use one or more of the resources below for the magnitude portion of your paper.


Perform a scoped Google search for statistical information online. Here's an example of a search that is limited to .gov webpages:

Search: adverse childhood experiences statistics site:gov

Other endings:



Google Web Search

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