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Essentials of Library Research

Helps you define your topic, find books and articles, evaluate the information you find, and cite your sources.

Library Contact

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Karen A. Reiman-Sendi
The University of Michigan
2178 Shapiro Library
919 S. University Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1185

How Did We Do?

Using This Guide

"Styven Magnes : Speech balloons" by Marc Wathieu is licensed with CC BY-NC 2.0.

  1. Choosing a Topic

A good paper starts with a well defined topic. Check out the resources on Choosing Your Topic to brainstorm, narrow or broaden your topic, and break your topic in to keywords or search terms.


"Compass" by Matt Biddulph is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0. 

  2. Finding Books & Articles

You have a topic, so what's next? Finding Books & Articles will give you the info you need to get started navigating the library's article databases and catalog.


Two students evaluating information  3. Evaluating Information

You'll want to use the best sources to back up your argument. Evaluating Information will help you identify a scholarly source, demystify peer-review, and evaluate the quality of your sources.



"Citation Needed" by Tom Morris is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0.   4. Citing Sources

MLA? APA? Chicago? We've got you've covered! The resources on the Citing Sources page will guide you through parts of a citation, citation styles, and our favorite citation generators.