English 110 – Pages – Social Issues
About this Guide
This guide provides students with recommended resources for conducting research in English 110 with Professor Pages.
Use the tabs to navigate through the pages of the guide.
A research paper on a social issue, to be chosen from the topic list provided by your instructor.
Paper Writing Assistance
Need More Help?
If you need more help with research, ask a librarian! Stop by the Reference Desk, or contact a librarian by phone, email, or chat for more help. Find our contact information on the right side of this page.
Interested in learning more about the library on your own? Explore the library’s online tutorials.
Reference sources are a great place to start, get topic ideas, identify good search terms, and get background information on your topic.
Print Reference Books
These resources are available in the Luria Library Reference section.
- Violence in America: An Encyclopedia – R 303.6 G685v
- Encyclopedia of Racism in the United States – R 305.800973 M663e
- Encyclopedia of Contemporary American Social Issues – R306.0973 S528e
- American Countercultures: An Encyclopedia of Nonconformists, Alternative Lifestyles, and Radical Ideas in U.S. History – R 306.1 M678a
- Encyclopedia of Politics – R 320.03 C283e
- Encyclopedia of Social Problems – R 361.1 P261e
- Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment R 364.03 L665e
Online Reference Sources
These resources are available online and will require your Pipeline account information when you access them off campus.
- Credo Reference: Contains the full text of nearly 600 encyclopedias, dictionaries, bilingual dictionaries, and other reference books.
- Gale Virtual Reference Library: Contains the full text of encyclopedias and specialized reference sources.
- The Official Guide to American Attitudes: Who Thinks What About the Issues That Shape Our Lives — ebook
- Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World — ebook
- Encyclopedia of Energy — ebook
Sometimes the words you use to describe a topic are different from the words used by the library catalog and databases. If you have trouble finding information on your topic, ask a librarian for help choosing the best keywords to use in your search. Or, try some of the search words listed below.
- Animal rights
- Alternatives to imprisonment — United States
- Consumption — health aspects — United States
- Educational accountability — United States
- Energy conservation– United States
- Renewable energy sources
- Nuclear energy– Government policy– United States
- Population policy — United States
- Birth Control — United States
- Technological innovations — Social aspects
- Technology and children
- Terrorism — Religious aspects — Islam
Books & Articles
Use the library catalog (books+) to search for books on your topic. To limit your search results to books, choose the appropriate box from the menu to the left of your search results.
Use the following databases to find articles from periodicals (magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals). These resources will require your Pipeline account information when you access them off campus.
For a good broad-coverage database to begin your search, try:
- Academic Search Premier: This multi-disciplinary database provides full text for more than 4,600 journals, including full text for nearly 3,900 peer-reviewed titles. PDF backfiles to 1975 or further are available for well over one hundred journals, and searchable cited references are provided for more than 1,000 titles.
For pro/con information on current or controversial issues, try searching one of these databases:
- CQ Researcher: An excellent source of pro/con information, containing single-themed reports on issues in the news. Provides in-depth, unbiased coverage of both sides of controversial issues related to health, social trends, criminal justice, international affairs, education, the environment, technology, and the economy. Each 12,000-word report includes: an introductory overview; background and chronology on the topic; an assessment of the current situation; tables and maps; pro/con statements from representatives of opposing positions; and bibliographies of key sources. Offers access to CQ Researcher reports dating back to 1991.
- Opposing Viewpoints: An excellent source of pro/con information, providing opinions and other information on hundreds of today’s hottest social issues. Includes continuously updated viewpoint articles, topic overviews, full-text magazines, academic journals, news articles, primary source documents, statistics, images, videos, audio files and links to vetted websites.
For newspaper articles, try searching one of these sources:
- US Newsstream (ProQuest): Provides full-text access to current U.S. news content from newspapers, newswires, blogs, and news sites. Archives dating back to the 1980s are also included. Specific titles include: New York Times; Los Angeles Times; Wall Street Journal; Christian Science Monitor; Washington Post; and USA Today, as well as hundreds of local and regional newspapers.
- Newspaper Source Plus: Provides cover-to-cover full text for 35 national and international newspapers. The database also contains selective full text for more than 375 regional (U.S.) newspapers. In addition, full text television and radio news transcripts are also provided.
See the Luria Library’s database descriptions page for a full list of library databases.
Figuring out whether the information you find online is credible enough for college research can be challenging. Use the P.R.O.V.E.N. Source Evaluation Questions to help you determine whether the sources you find are credible:
- Purpose: How and why the source was created. Is it intended to educate, inform, persuade, sell, or entertain? Do the authors, publishers, or sponsors state this purpose, or try to disguise it? Why was this information published in this particular type of source (book, article, website, blog, etc.)? Is the source designed for the general public, students, or experts?
- Relevance: The value of the source for your needs. Does the type of source meet your assignment’s requirements? Does the information answer your question, support your argument, or add something to your knowledge of the topic? Is it too general or too specific? Is it too basic or too advanced?
- Objectivity: The reasonableness and completeness of the information. Do the authors present the information thoroughly and professionally? Is it fact or opinion? Is it biased? Do the authors use strong, emotional, manipulative, or offensive language? Do they leave out, or make fun of, important facts or alternative perspectives?
- Verifiability: The accuracy and truthfulness of the information. Do the authors support the information they present with strong factual evidence? Do they cite or provide links to other sources? What do experts say about the topic? Can you verify the information in other credible sources? Does the source contradict itself, include false statements, or misrepresent other sources?
- Expertise: The authority of the creators of the source. What makes the authors, publishers, or sponsors of the source authorities on the topic? Do they have related education, experience, or other expertise? Do they provide an important alternative perspective? Has the source been reviewed in some way, such as by an editor or through peer review?
- Newness: The age of the information. Is your topic in an area that requires current information (such as science, technology, or current events), or could information found in older sources still be useful? When was the information presented in the source first published or posted? Are newer sources available that would add important information to your understanding of the topic?
For more help locating reliable information online, see the Finding Credible Web Sources research guide.