Research: Day 126

Today was the day we started researching criticism, background, and author interviews about the novels we read. Now, we’re not just using yer ol’ Google search. I showed all students how pointless a Google search really is. Instead, we are using the databases provided by the school as well as some other Google products (Google Scholar, for instance).

1. How to take notes. All students received an example pink notecard (download a whole page of ’em here: Citation Cards 2012). Then, we looked at the Steinbeck review we read in class yesterday. We then chose one category that we might be able to answer research questions for and then took notes to answer those questions. For instance, the one category may have been Reception. So, on our pink cards we checked the Reception box — and no other boxes. Then, we selected quotes and paraphrased the opinions of that one author.

2. Nicknaming articles. You need to pick a short way of naming each article you read so that you can identify it both on your pink notecard and in Google Docs. Choose the author of the article’s last name, the journal title, the title of the article, or the first few words of the article. It should be something that’s different from every other article you read (beware: many articles will be titled “Your Book’s Name: Review,” like “Of Mice and Men: Review”). We will copy and paste the url of the article into the bottom of our GoogleDoc and type in the article nickname beside each.

3. How to research. All students received W30, which is a research guide that shows which websites to use to get the best sources. You can download it here: Literature Review Resources.

4. Research time. Finally, students had time to research at the computers, print out articles, and begin annotating them.

HW: None for tonight. All research is due on Monday. Honors need 5 articles. Regular needs 3 articles. Honors project folks need 10-15 articles (each).