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COMP 1011: The College Research Essay (Christiansen) Summer 2023 1011

Librarian: Dr. Mary Lynn Bensen

What is research?

Research is a process of inquiry spanning the simple search for facts to the investigative study of complex ideas.  It is more than gathering and summarizing sources.  Research becomes a conversation between you and other researchers to whose work you respond.  Your authority depends partly upon the sources that you identify in your research.

Research is a continuous process.  Research is not a linear path.  Library research is only one kind of research among others such as experimental, field, observational, and more.

Typically, the research process can involve:

  • Identifying a research need and defining its scope
  • Developing a claim, hypothesis, or question
  • Selecting and using search tools appropriate to the research need
  • Discovering the information most valuable for meeting the research need
  • Reflecting on the experience of the research process

Topic choice:

  • Should meet the course requirements
  • Should fit the time allotted
  • Should be interesting