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Primary sources are firsthand accounts of a topic. Primary sources are written or created during the time period being studied, or by a person directly involved in the event. Some types of primary sources are listed below.
  Original Documents Creative Works Artifacts
  Diaries/Journals Novels Jewelry
  Speeches Music Tools
  Letters Films Pottery
  Autobiographies Visual Art Pottery Interviews
  Interviews Poetry Buildings
  Research Data Performing Arts Furniture
  News Film Footage  
Secondary Sources interpret and analyze primary sources.  Some types of secondary sources are listed below.
  Textbooks Journal Articles Histories
  Criticism Commentaries Encyclopedias
  Biographies  


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Knowing how to locate and use reference materials can save time and improve research effectiveness. If you are uncertain about where to begin your research, start in the Reference Office or follow a basic research method. A reliable, proven model has you identify the kind of information you need so you can select the appropriate types of sources to find that information.

Reference Books and eBooks
Subject Resources
Academic Books (The Library's Book Collection)
Periodical or Journal Articles
Librarians
The (Free) Web


Top Level Domain (TDL) name for each Web page provides basic information about the provider of the Web page.
.com - commerical organizations
.edu - educational organizations
.org - non-governmental organizations
.net - network provider
.biz - business
.mil - armed forces
.gov - governmental entities
Librarians provide assistance in locating sources at any step in this process but can be especially helpful in identifying and using indexes, abstracts, and bibliographies that lead to more extensive or specialized resources.


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Every book, article, or web page is written for a particular purpose: to inform, to persuade, to entertain, to poke fun at . . . Before you accept the information in the book, article,or web page you need to analyze it. You need to understand it before you choose how to use the information it contains. The following questions are provided so that you may evaluate each source you
consider for use.
Criterion #1: Accuracy   Criterion #4: Currency
How reliable and free of error is the information? Is the content of the work up-to-date?
Are there editors and fact checkers? Is the publication date clearly labeled?
Criterion #2: Authority Is the date an indication of:
  Date information first written?
What are the author's qualifications for writing on this subject?
Date information placed on the Web?
Date information last revised?
How reputable is the publisher or web sponsor?
Criterion #5: Coverage
Criterion #3: Objectivity
What topics are included in the work?
Is the information presented with a minimum of bias?
Are the topics included explored in depth?
To what extent is the information trying to sway
opinion of the audience?