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Criminal Justice: Starting Your Research

Resource guide for sources in Criminal Justice

Steps in Research

I. Understand the format of the assignment, type and number of sources you can use, and how current your information has to be. Any questions regarding this information should be directed to your course instructor.

II. Have a clear understanding of the instructors expectations for this assignment in terms of its length and its due date.

III. Choose a topic:

  • brainstorm by talking to your instructor, other students, and consulting the course text and/or class notes
  • read recent articles in journals
  • read general articles in subject specific encyclopedias and other reference sources 

IV. Develop research question(s).

V. Identify keywords, concepts, and terms related to your topic.

VI. Develop a search strategy.

VII. Choose your sources: online catalog (LIUCAT), databases, and Google Scholar.

VIII. Write your paper.

IX. Don't forget to cite sources using citation style assigned by your professor.

X. Talk to a librarian if you need help.

How to Develop a Good Research Topic

Credit: KStateLibraries

How to Find Research Topic Ideas

If you are having trouble identifying a topic it may be helpful to look at the topic guides in each of these two resources to help spark your creative juices.