Assignment 1: Research Journal Entry
You have made significant progress in the prewriting phase of your literature review.
In Modules 1 and 2, you selected a focal/research topic and a list of potential references.
Now, you have entered into the process of evaluating those references and perhaps seeking more information. You are beginning to sift through your references for common themes that you will use as headings in your literature review paper.
According to researchers who have interviewed thousands of college students about the process of gathering information for such papers, there is a great deal of frustration involved in the process. Students describe how difficult it is to get started or to find high quality, relevant, current articles on their chosen topic.
Some students have found it helpful to discuss the process with each other, give each other tips, and share their successes and pitfalls with the research process.
In the form of a research journal entry, post a description of your efforts so far in the course:
- Provide a list of your search terms (words or phrases you used when searching in the online library database, on Google Scholar, or on other search engines).
- Discuss at least three frustrations you have had with the searching process. Be specific. You could describe a specific dead end you faced in a search. Or, if you had difficulty getting started, discuss how you overcame that frustration. What did you do or avoid doing, in order to get past the point of being stuck?
- Share at least three tips. For example, if you have had successes with the online library or Internet search, what did you do well? Did you find articles using a unique strategy?
- Did you use a less-reliable Web site, such as Wikipedia, to jump start your search? Why or why not? If you did use it, how did you use it? What information did you gain from using it?
- Add any other details that would help you describe your experience so far.
Post your research journal entry to the Discussion Area by Saturday, June 7, 2014. Review and respond to your classmates through Wednesday, June 11, 2014.
Respond to at least two classmates' research journal entries with suggestions or questions designed to help them with their research of their topic. Share your perspectives on their efforts, suggest helpful tips, or share similar frustrations and how you overcame them.