Library Assignment

Finding, Evaluating, and Annotating Sources


This library assignment, in conjunction with a library tutorial, introduces you to particular types of sources and guides you towards finding and evaluating them yourself.


  1. Look through our syllabus and readings and choose a topic to learn more about.

  2. Review the library website’s help guide for conducting research

  3. Using the appropriate electronic databases, locate four types of sources that address your topic. These sources should include the following: one essay in an academic journal, one book (either a monograph or collection of essays), one magazine article, and one newspaper article from your region, state, or local community.


The following questions might help you identify a topic to research:

  • What questions have our readings raised for you? What else do you want to know?

  • Look at the titles of the readings we have yet to discuss. What do their approaches to privacy offer you to think about?

  • If you were going to revise either of your first two essays, what additional information, commentary, or perspectives would you want to consider?

  • What else have our authors written?

  • Who has been citing our authors in their own work? What kinds of research are they doing?



Students who complete this assignment will be able to

• Select and use library finding aids appropriate to their research topic

• Identify different types of sources according to their audience, level of specialization, frequency of publication, length and purpose

• Evaluate sources for integrity and relevance to their project

• Document their work using appropriate conventions (MLA)


Please complete the following sheet and attach your Works Cited page to it. Your bibliography should adhere to MLA guidelines e.g. entries listed alphabetically by author.

Due: Wednesday, March 12th



What is your topic?

Which databases have you searched?

List your search terms and the number of results for each search:

Note the dominant characteristics of each of these types of sources (i.e., what makes an essay in a scholarly  journal different from a magazine article), and list the titles of the four sources you found:






What are the “subject headings” listed in the entry for the book and/or articles? How many results do you get when you search the “subject”?

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