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MGT 119: Sustainability: Research Tips

This guide supports the MGT 119 class assignments.

Writing a Research Paper? Get Started Here.

Projects that require research can be an overwhelming process.  Here are some tips to help you get started.

1. Understand your assignment. 

2. Think about what types of sources would be useful to your topic.  Would these sources be background material? Do you need examples or evidence to analyze?  Sources that help you build or refute an argument can be useful.  You can also explore other study's methods to apply to your own research.

3. Explore some of the other tabs on this guide to help you explore your topic to build a research question and find books and articles on your topic.

4. Ask for help- Feel free to stop by the Research Assistance Desk in the west wing of the 2nd floor at Geisel Library.  Don't have time to stop by? Feel free to consult with a librarian over chat, through email or by phone.

What is Plagiarism?

Plagiarism can be unintentional or intentional when ideas, text, and creative work are used but not cited in academic, professional, and personal work. Common forms of plagiarism can include:

  • Passing off another’s ideas or work as your own
  • Fabricating citations
  • Copying, cutting and pasting without citing the original source
  • Paraphrasing incorrectly
  • Using media files, such as image, audio or video files, without citing them

How will you know if something is common knowledge? Consider:

  1. Can it be found in many different places?
  2. Is it widely known by a lot of different people?

Use your common sense — when in doubt, ask!

For more information about what constitutes plagiarism, please see the Academic Integrity Office.


Information Timeline

Flow of Information

The flow of information is a timeline of how information is created, distributed and found.  Information is disseminated through a variety of channels, each with their own authors, audiences and time frames.  By knowing what type of information you are looking for, and the time frame of that source, will help you explore resources more strategically.  

Reporter of the Event Time Frame Where to Look Written by Audience
News (Twitter, Internet, TV, Radio) Seconds/Minutes/Days

Websites, TV Stations, Radio Stations

Citizens, Journalists General Public
Newspapers Day/ Days Newspapers, Newspaper Websites, Newspaper Indexes Professional Journalists General Public
Magazines Days/Weeks Magazines, Magazine Websites, Periodical indexes Professional Journals, Cultural Critics General Public. Knowledgeable Layperson
Academic Journals Months Library Catalog, Article Database, Journal Website Specialists in the Field, Scholars Other Scholars, Specialists, Students
Books Years Library Catalog Specialists, Scholars General Public to Scholars
E-Books Years Library Catalog, Publishers Websites Specialists, Scholars General Public to Scholars
Reference Sources Years Library Catalog, Reference Databases, Publishers Websites Specialists, Scholars General Public to Scholars
Web Pages Seconds/Minutes to Years Web search tools Anyone General Public to Scholars


Tips for Successful Paraphrasing

  1. Start your research early, so you are not under pressure to finish and be more likely to make mistakes when paraphrasing.

  2. Read the entire text, underlining key points and main ideas.

  3. In your own words, write a sentence about the main idea of the text (i.e. summarize). Also, write key points in the text.

  4. Highlight any words, phrases, or key passages that you would want to quote directly.

  5. Combine the above into a new paraphrased paragraph, using your own words.