Discover: How can I find and access primary sources appropriate for my research?
Some questions students will learn to answer
- Can I use sources from the Internet?
- Does my library have primary sources on my topic?
- What is an archive?
- What is a finding aid and how do I use it?
- How can I use secondary sources to locate primary sources?
Learning objectives this module will address
- How to identify primary sources on the WWW.
- How to locate primary sources using library catalogs.
- Understand how source material gets collected, preserved, and described.
- Understanding why many voices are absent, and how to fill the void.
Sample exercises that may be used in this module
- A survey of resource discovery tools – WWW, WorldCat, Libraries, and Print. Practice finding research materials through a variety of search methods.
- Fun with Finding Aids – a Finding Aid Puzzle – Deconstructing Description. Explore how archives create and use finding aids to describe and provide access to primary source collections.
- Working backward – tracing citations and footnotes. Practice using bibliographies to discover and track down research sources.
- Observing the silences. Understand how and why certain materials are collected and who collects them. Practice searching for missing voices in alternative sources.