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Research Process

This tutorial aims to help develop effective library research skills and critical thinking skills in all courses at Prince George's Community College.

One of the key things to remember when selecting a topic is to choose a subject that is of interest to you. It makes the research process more enjoyable and fun. You might want to consider selecting a topic that has occurred over the past several months. You can always get ideas from your instructor and/or a librarian. 

Sources for Topic Ideas


  • Ready Reference Books (Shelved at the Reference Desk):
    • 10,000 Ideas for Term Papers, Projects, Reports and Speeches
    • 1,000 Ideas for English Papers
  • Current Issues
  • Stories in the News
  • Newspaper Editorials
  • Table of Contents and Indexes of Books
  • Encyclopedias
  • Personal Experiences
  • Suggestions from Your instructor
  • Online Resources


Successful research papers are determined by understanding the assignment and developing a research strategy. Listed below are hints for developing a strategy for the research process.

S - Select a topic that is of interest to you.

T - Tailor the topic, do background reading, and formulate a thesis.

R - Review sources to determine the pertinent ones for the topic.

A - Access a range of resources to develop a well rounded paper.

T - Time and stress management help to yield a quality paper.

E - Engage help from faculty and librarians to develop the paper.

G - Gather quality resources to document points.

Y - Yield to understand that information is power.