Start Your Research

A guide to the research process, covering how to develop and topic and devise a search plan, locating information, using information, evaluating sources, and citing sources

Where to Search

So where do you search to find the best resources to write your research paper?

Don't start with Google to do your research. You aren't going to find the scholarly sources that are best for your research there because scholarly research costs money and isn't freely available online for the most part. Luckily, the library pays to access a lot of scholarly research and makes it available through a variety of different search tools.

Search Everything

magnifying glassSearch Everything

Advanced Search

Research Databases

If you feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of results you are getting when using search anything, you can search an individual database. Below are databases that cover a wide variety of subject areas. To find more databases, and see which are specific to your subject, look at the list of all the library databases.

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is another resource for finding research articles. Look on the right hand side of the screen for the "Check MCLA Full-Text" links that will bring you to the article in one of our databases. You can also look for the free PDFs listed on the right hand side. If you are off-campus, use these instructions to set it up for full access to library resources.

google scholarGoogle Scholar


News Sources

If you are just looking for news resources, below is a list of library databases that cover news.

Video & Audio News Sources

Audio and video can add a different dimension to your research that you might not get with print resources. Below is how to find these resources in the Gale databases, a link to our documentary film database, and some tips on searching YouTube.

Find Audio & Video in Gale Databases

When you search the Gale Databases you can narrow your search by audio or video. Use the tools on the left hand side of the screen to narrow your search as in the screenshot below.

Searching YouTube