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First Year Seminars: FYS 138-4 Philosophy of Monsters

Focusing and Developing - Finding Background Information

Scholarly Encyclopedias

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Focusing and Developing - Finding Books

Use MUSCAT Plus to Find Materials

Start with a keyword search which searches book titles, authors, subject headings, book descriptions, etc.

  • Use AND and OR to broaden or narrow your search

    • For example: monsters AND film

  • You can search for specific phrases by using quotation marks.

    • For example: "Mary Shelley" AND monster

  • An asterisk* will let you search for the root of a word and any variation after the asterisk (monst** = monster, monsters, monstrous)

Focusing and Developing - Finding Scholarly Articles

General Database
Film Studies
Literary Studies

Annotated Bibliographies

As you're developing a research paper, it can be helpful to think about how your sources fit together in conversation with each other to support your argument. An annotated bibliography is one way in which researchers do this.

An annotated bibliography typically include a citation followed by a summary and/or evaluation of each of the sources. Generally your annotations will:

1. Summarize. Provide an overview of the source's main argument. Consider how would you describe the work to someone that hasn't read it.

2. Assess. Following the overview of its argument, consider its strengths and weaknesses. How does it compare to the other sources you've selected? Does it cover one thing in great depth but fail to discuss something else. Does it have a clear bias or objective?

3. Reflect. Once you've summarized the source and considered its strengths and weaknesses, how will you use the source in your project? Does it give you strong evidence for one part of your argument? Does it have a good overview of previous literature? 

Apply - Citing Your Sources

The library's citation guide provides information on a variety of styles. We also have the manuals for each style at the Research Help Desk.

The Purdue OWL is also very helpful for MLA, APA, or Chicago styles.