English 102

CWI library staff won the Association of College and Research Library's 2019 Excellence in Academic Libraries award

To follow along, load this in your browser: https://www.ryanpatrickrandall.com/talks/engl102.html

Created by Ryan P. Randall


I'm Ryan Randall, from the Library!

I'm here to help you prepare for your next assignment. And the rest of your classes, to be honest.

We'll talk about the inquiry process and advanced searching.

What have you already done in the library?

  • Printing?
  • Used the textbooks on reserve?
  • Used one of our many computers?
  • Requested an article or book?
  • Used the online chat?
  • Used the anatomical models?

Here's some more library resources!

Any questions so far?

Person's hand turning pages of a book, with every having only a single large question mark

The Inquiry Process

"Research" is not finding a hidden cave full of facts.

So what is it?

For one, it's a process!

Let's take three minutes to talk about how you currently research things. What do you do? How do you start? How do you end?

So, what do you do?

Where do you tend to look?

How do you decide if it's good to use?

When do you know it's time to stop?

Wait: how did you even know what question you were asking?

Research Process

1: Project Assigned. 2: Pick your topic. 3: Circle of stages: a. Focus your topic. b. Find sources. c. Read and evaluate sources. 4: Write/create and edit. 5: Project due.

It might surprise you, but expert writers go through that middle circle repeatedly.

Inquiry Process (An Expanded Research Process)

1: Pose real questions. 2: Find resources. 3: Interpret information. 4: Report findings.

Ask yourself questions in each part to help you move along!

Research as a circular puzzle. The stages are: define task, identify options, select sources, analyze content, and present findings. Evaluate is an interior piece linking all the outside circular pieces.

The Seattle Community Colleges's research process puzzle shows evaluation as central.

Abstraction ⇒ Action

aka "I'm happy for you & I'm gonna let you finish
but I need to get this paper done"

Another Version of the Inquiry Process

  1. Essential Question: What do you want to know?
  2. Proposal & Plan: How & where will you search?
  3. Explore & Research: How does what you find change your approach? How can experts help?
  4. Put It All Together: Make an appointment with CWI's Writing Center!
  5. Share It All: Turn in what you've made!

The Library can help most with the first three parts.

Here's some great places to start!

Article Searching +

Close-up on man's face with advanced math symbols.

Keywords and Advanced Search are Your Friends

Let's work on developing the keywords for your search.

Search Term Brainstorming

  Topic Broader Narrower Synonym Related
examples: car vehicle Honda automobile truck

Book Searching +

Cat looking around while wearing glasses

Let's try searching for books related to our topic.

How did this go? Let me know at https://bit.ly/cwilif!

Keep in touch with the CWI Library

Please schedule an appointment with a CWI Librarian if you'd like further research assistance.

You can also get help from the College of Western Idaho Libraries through our online chat, our FAQ pages, calling or texting us, and email!

Thank you for your time!
"Pulling a book off the shelf" photo by Bennington College's Crossett Library with a CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 license.
Blakeslee, S. (2004). The CRAAP test. LOEX Quarterly, 31(3), 6-7. Retrieved from https://commons.emich.edu/loexquarterly/vol31/iss3/4.
"Purpose" photo by Seth Sawyers with a CC BY 2.0 license and given some minimal filtering by Ryan.