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BIOL 415/515: Background

Course Guide for Darwin & the Origin of Species

Why Background Information?

Finding basic information about your topic helps you to understand the broader context of your research.  This is particularly important at the beginning of your research if you are unfarmliar with your topic or uncertain how to narrow the focus of the subject.

Background information can supply: 

  1. Broad overview
  2. Main concepts
  3. Major dates and events
  4. Definitions of terms associated with the topic
  5. Names of people who are authorities in the subject field
  6. Keywords and subject-specific vocabulary terms that can be used for database searches
  7. Bibliographies that lead to additional resources

 

Types of resouces for background information :  Encyclopedias, Guides, Handbooks, Manuals, etc.  

Credo Electronic Reference Collection

Online access to a collection of online reference materials covering a wide array of subjects.  (Dictionaries, Encyclopedias, Handbooks, Guides, etc.)

Provides online reference from digitized reference sources. Searchable by reference source, by subject, or across all sources. Includes a concept mapping function to assist in broadening or narrowing searches. Reliable, reputable reference sources. Citation assistance is available for the most popular formats.

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Electronic Reference Collection by Gale

Online access to a collection of online reference materials covering a variety of subjects.  (Dictionaries, Encyclopedias, Handbooks, Guides, etc.)