This guide summarizes library and other resources useful for speech, communications, and mass media studies research projects, including books, databases, journals, and websites. Information in this guide will be useful in a communication studies degree or certificate program, for additional or supplemental information for any course or program, for research projects that focus on topics in the subject, or for personal interest, enjoyment, and enrichment.
BROAD TOPICS are generally phrases that describe a big idea or thing:
RESTRICTED TOPICS may only be one part of the broad topic or they may link two different ideas. In the examples below, “water pollution” is a particular type of pollution; “Nutrition and pregnancy” links the broad topic of nutrition with pregnancy to focus it.
NARROWED TOPICS give your research more focus. In the examples below, “Pollution in San Francisco Bay” is still looking at “water pollution” – but only water pollution in a particular location. “Commercial salmon fishing” is looking at the salmon fishing industry, rather than at sport fishing.
FOCUSED RESEARCH QUESTIONS:
As you do your research, you need to ask very specific, focused questions to find out the information for your paper.
Who = People
What = Facts; causes and effects
When = Time
Where = Place(s) or geographical information
Why = Reasons
How = Methods (How many, How much = Statistics, amounts)
Focused Research Question #1
Focused Research Question #2
|pollution in San Francisco Bay
|What is the most common pollutant in the bay?
|Where does the pollution come from?
|commercial salmon fishing
|When can fisherman legally catch wild salmon?
|Why don't people only eat farm raised salmon?
|nutrition and pregnancy
|vegetarian diets and pregnancy
|How much protein does a pregnant woman need to eat daily?
|What foods will provide the most protein in a vegetarian diet?