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SOC 200: Studies in Sociology: Getting Started

Goals for today

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  • Continue to define and refine your topic
  • Start exploring scholarly resources
  • Find sources for your annotated bibliography (due on the April 21!)

Deciding on a topic

Often finding a topic can be the most challenging part of writing a research paper, here are some ways to choose and narrow down a topic.

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Ask youself

  • What am I interested in?
  • What do I want to know?
  • What problems need to be solved?


Too specific/ not specifc enough?

  • Be reasonable
  • Start wide and focus/narrow doesn your question
  • Try to make an 'idea pyramid'
  • Still having trouble? Ask Dr. Chapman or a librarian

Getting Background Information

Google can be a great resource, especially when getting started. 

You should also check out Credo and Sage for background information or history!

Mind Map Template

Pyramid Template

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Subject Guide

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Jamie Kohler

Make an appointment at L&WS

Learning and Writing Services is your place to go for Free peer tutoring, they can help you:

  • Understand the concepts and ideas of a course/topic
  • Write and revise your papers (including citing!)
  • Manage your time and study better!

You can make an appointment on their webpage