Answered By: Hannah DiMeglio
Last Updated: Feb 17, 2021     Views: 2

I feel you... it can be really overwhelming at first! I'm helping with a research project now and, so far, we have over 32 pages of citations : o and we're not even done. But! There are things you can do to save yourself time and energy: 

  1. Use Ask a Librarian from the beginning to get you started strong. You can even book a librarian to meet with you via Zoom. 
  2. Separate searching from reading: When you search OneSearch or our databases, use the email function to send anything that looks like it might be good to yourself... don't read and search at the same time! Then, on another day when you are fresh, go through your email and read what you sent. 
  3. Read smarter: 
    1. Scholarly articles are long, but you don't have to read the whole thing just to get an idea whether you'll use it in your paper or not... Read the abstract first (it's usually the paragraph after the title) to get an overview of the whole article, go to the very bottom and (right before the references) read the last section, called either Conclusion or Discussion, to find out what they learned. By reading those, you should have a good idea of whether it will work. If you decide to use it, read the whole paper. 
    2. For ebooks, use the search function to search for your keywords. It will take you directly to the pages that mention them. 
  4. Use OneSearch or database tools to get the APA Citation, and then check it with our APA Guide. Use our APA Paper Template to save you time formatting your paper, if you choose to write a paper. 
  5. Send your paper draft with the instructions to ascatutor@pstcc.edu to get feedback on your writing. 

You've got this! Remember, researching may be something you don't do very often, and it's like a muscle: with training, it gets easier... and you have lots of help: your instructor, librarians, the Tutoring Center... We love to help : ))