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Writing 10 (Elkins): Select Sources

College Reading & Composition

Decision Time

person thinking       How do researchers decide which sources to use?

Selecting Your Sources


  • Read the abstract or summary to get a sense of whether the source might be useful.
  • Look at the citation to determine if the item is a format that you can use (book, magazine article, journal article, newspaper article, DVD, blog, etc.)
  • When you find one relevant source, use it to lead you to others on the same topic.
  • If you're not finding information that exactly matches your topic, use pieces of information from sources that are related. (Information quilting)


One Perfect Source?

North Carolina State University (NCSU) Libraries, 2:08