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FYS: What Are You Saying? Exploring Language and Communication

Library research tips for Professor Abby Dings' FYS

Search Strategy: Use Keywords or Subject Headings

When searching for books and articles on topics for this course, think about keywords / synonyms related to the research question you are exploring; example: taboo words, cursing, swearing, obscene words, slang, and more! 

Here are a few subject terms to get you thinking:

sociolinguistics | english language political aspects | english language obscene words | slang | language and sex | language sex differences | sexism in language | bilingualism | code switching linguistics

Start your search for books and more in WorldCat.

Search Tip

When you find a good book on your topic in WorldCat, use the "More like this" subject links to find additional books classified under the same heading. Subject headings are standardized tags that describe the content of an item. You can use these tags to find material on the same topic regardless of the words used in the material’s text.

Suggested Databases for Articles

Academic Search Complete is a comprehensive scholarly, multi-disciplinary full-text database. Start your research for articles here!  Tip #1: When you view a full record for an article, read the abstract, or summary, to quickly decide if it is useful for your research.  Tip #2: Use the subject links from the full record to find additional articles.

JSTOR is a multi-disciplinary database which provides scholarly, full-text content. While coverage goes all the way back to the 19th century, be aware there is no current content for many journals. 

Depending on your topic, it might be useful to search several EBSCO databases at once. One way to do this is to go to the EBSCOhost Choose Databases site. To select more than one database to search, check the boxes next to the databases and click Continue. 


Identifying Scholarly Sources in Academic Search Complete

APA Citation Style

Research isn't complete until you correctly cite all your sources. Provide a complete citation to credit the authors / creators of sources you used, and to let your paper's reader locate and verify these sources. Professor Dings requires you to use APA style for this course. 

Purdue OWL -- Online Writing Lab -- covers the basics of APA formatting and style. For the most complete information, use the Manuals, available in the Research Commons and on Reserve.