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Lakeland Community College Library | 7700 Clocktower Dr. Kirtland, OH, 44094 | 440-525-7425 | myLakeland
Types of Sources
Book sources will help you build a broad understanding of your topic. Books are a great place to go for background information, and thus are often a great starting point for research and for defining your topic.
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The term "periodical" refers to anything that is published at regular intervals throughout the year such as a newspaper, magazine, or journal:
- Newspapers provide some of the most current information on a topic and can be great for providing historical or societal context for your topic. News articles usually do not provide in-depth analysis of a topic.
- Magazines, written by professional journalists and reviewed by editors, can be a great source of general information on a topic. Much like newspapers, magazines can be useful for learning more about a topic, but usually offer little in-depth information.
- Academic journals are research-based and thoroughly reviewed by experts prior to publication. They are written for scholars and researchers within a specific discipline. They are the best sources for in-depth analysis of a topic.
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Web sites can meet a variety of different information needs, including gathering background information about or further defining your topic, or finding details not garnered from other sources. However, they must be evaluated carefully and critically.
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