It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
The purpose of this step is to take your broad topic and narrow it down to what you are specifically looking for so you can write your thesis/specific purpose statement. You want to look for subtopics or additional search terms in this step.
You can try searching the internet, using the Content Box in Wikipedia or search other encyclopedias to help narrow down your topic. You can not normally cite these sources for academic research (check with your professor), however they are great resources for narrowing down your topic.
Science.gov searches over 60 databases and over 2,200 scientific websites to provide users with access to more than 200 million pages of authoritative federal science information including research and development results.
Access available without a CCC library card. Included in EasySearch.
PubMed is a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine that includes over 17 million citations from MEDLINE and other life science journals for biomedical articles back to the 1950s. It includes links to selected full text articles and other related resources
Primary vs. Secondary Research Quick Check
Characteristics of Primary Sources/Research Articles
Presents original data and ideas from a scientific investigation including the results of experiments, observations and other scientific investigations
Reported by scientists and written for others in the field and published in scientific journals (usually peer-reviewed)
Most primary article have at least some of these headings - method/materials, experimental procedure, results, discussion/data interpretation
Characteristics of Secondary Sources/Review Articles
Describes, interprets, analyzes and evaluates the original research as well as comments on and discusses the evidence provided by primary sources
Written for a scientific audience or for a non-scientific audience by experts (scientists) or general writers
Published in science magazines and may be published in some science journals