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ENC 1101: Written Communication: Dougherty

Starting Page for All ENC1101 Courses

ENC 1101-Prof. Ellen Dougherty

Welcome to the Library Guide for ENC1101 Prof. Ellen Dougherty

I am Tim Kircher, your ENC1101 librarian. If you have questions you can send me an email at, or ask for me at the Bradenton Library & Learning Center, Bldg. 3

Website Orientation

The following document gives you an overview of the SCF Libraries website and where to start your research:


Library website overview

SCF Libraries Website Overview

See where everything is located on our website and where to start your research and get help.

How to Research: Picking and Refining a Topic

Topic Selection & Refining

General advice:

- Where possible pick something that interests you.

- Be open to questioning your assumptions.

- Avoid topics that are too broad or too narrow: if you are interested in climate change for instance, focus on a specific issue under that umbrella rather than trying to tackle the entire thing.

- Read widely to strengthen your knowledge of a topic so that you can use more precise search terms and get better results.

- If experts disagree, try to figure out what methods and reasoning the experts used to arrive at their different conclusions. Where do they diverge from each other? 

Resources for Starting Research:

These databases and digital resources are particularly helpful for starting a research assignment. They are easy to navigate and provide detailed and authoritative information.

Advanced Research Strategies

One you've gained some basic understanding of your topic, you may need to find more information. You may find yourself in need of additional information not found in the basic reference databases, in need of peer reviewed sources, or required to find print resources.

Advanced Research Tips:

- Practice using the "Advanced Search" options where possible: see what happens when you check and uncheck certain boxes, when you use more or fewer search terms, when you do "subject" or "title" searches instead of "any field."

- Use the filter options in your search results to help sort through large numbers of search results to find what you're looking for.

- If you can't find an article that says exactly what you need it to say then its time to change your mind or your search strategy. The research should be telling you what to say, not your gut.

- Peer Review represents the highest standard for quality but it is a process that takes time which means you may not find a large quantity of peer reviewed sources on every topic. Due to limits of time, geography, language, or social status, not every story gets recorded for the historical record in the level of detail we might want it to be.

Advanced Research Resources

These databases and resources will help you get that extra level of quality and scholarly rigor that you need. They may be less straight forward to use than Google but with patience and experimentation, they can be powerful tools.

MLA Citation