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Research Guides

Citation styles and word usage not the problem? Perhaps you need something to read. A little distraction to prime the pumps....it is all in the name of greater creativity! The good people at The Chronicle of Higher Education understand your plight and offer you the Arts & Letters Daily. If you cannot find an educational distraction on this site please seek immediate medical assistance.

Need to know a little bit more about something? Need to get a clue about what more you need to learn? Do you know a lot about something? Have you always wanted to improve an article? Wikipedia is (sort of) here for you! Wikipedia varies greatly in reliability, but it is often useful for learning a little bit about something or getting an idea of where else to look for better information. Anyone can contribute to Wikipedia, regardless of his or her credentials, expertise, knowledge or writing ability.Once you have a little bit more of a clue about the topic you can find more - and more reliable - information at the CWU Brooks Library (look in the Online Public Access Catalog [Cattrax] for books on the topic, and in their databases for journal and newspaper articles [when available select 'peer-reviewed' for the most reliable materials].

You can also use Google Scholar to find additional articles and books on your topic.

Another frequently useful approach is to look up the citations provided in some Wikipedia articles (but check on the reliability of those sources - were they peer-reveiwed, are they current, were they written by acknowledged experts, what is their context, etcetera). Some of those citations might sometimes be, or lead to, useful sources. The Wikipedia article itself should not be listed as a source in your paper. You can also help improve Wikipedia by adding appropriate citations and improving the phrasing of articles.

Another marvelous, and much more reliable, conduit of information is the Reference Desk in the CWU Brooks Library. The Reference Desk is open when the Library is open, and is staffed exclusively by knowledgable people who like to be asked questions. Go make them happy by asking them some questions!

Even the best writers can stumble into using a logical fallacy and weaken an otherwise excellent paper, story, or article. This is one of the better catalogs of logical fallacies, it explains what they are and how to identify them. The Nizkor Project provides a similar list of logical fallacies, as also does Logical Fallacies.info, Wikipedia, and the University of North Carolina. Logic is always, in some way, an essential part of excellent writing.