How to Find a Topic

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There are many ways to find a good topic for a paper.  If you are in the library, you can look at our new book display in the lobby, or look at current magazines which are behind the reference desk. You can also browse any of the online resources listed below, which are online encyclopedias and news sources.

Types of resources

  • Books - very good for a broad overview of your topic.  Depending on your topic, books may not have the most recent information.
  • Encyclopedias - good for a quick overview of your topic.  May not have the most recent information.
  • Newspapers - good for current information and opinions about your topic
  • Journal articles - good for current, scholarly information about your topic

Good places to browse for a topic

Good places to get different viewpoints on a topic

Tips on how to narrow the scope of your topic

  • What people are involved?
  • Is there a particular place, country or location that is involved?
  • When did it happen?
  • Why is your topic important?
  • What interests you about this topic?