Page 4 Ch 4 Notes

Chapter 4 Notes:

What's a Good Source?

It all starts with sources they help:

  • Verify work that may recieve something new.
  • Collecting information that relates to research questions.
  • Methods and theories from other scholars.
  • Views, assumptions, or conclusions that you can build on.

All writing follows research

  • Begin with a specific problem or question: a catalyst
  • Review scholarly publications: to make sure your question is worth asking and that scholars won't be wondering.
  • Design and conduct some kind of investigation: solve the problem/find an answer to the question.
  • Report results of the research

Note: writing typically follows research

Credibility depends on the particular audience and situation. (You can ask scholars.)

Explore a research database & search online.

Some questions to look at when searching online:

  • Who wrote this? What makes them credible?
  • What are the authors trying to achieve?
  • How do they support their claims?
  • Is anyone profiting from this? Who? How might money-making influence the contents?
  • When was this written?
  • Will still this be here next month?

The questions above can help seek if online information is essential.

Big topics need big research containers. (Broad Subject -> Narrow Topic -> Research Question)

Note Scholars also use a trick by summarizing, paraphrasing, and quoting other scholars!


  • To capture the whole text in a smaller amount of space.
  • To identify the most important parts of larger text.
  • To condense.

A summary will help you select main points and condense the original.


  • To represent portion of the text in your own words.
  • To restate an idea in a different style but maintain original length.
  • To translate someone else's words into your own phrasing.
  • To avoid quoting too frequently, in order to maintain a consistent tone.

Paraphrasing will help translate the text into your own words.


  • To express a specific idea verbatim.
  • To credit an author's original term, phrase, or controversial statement.
  • To boost your credibility.

Main Objectives:

  • Read the text
  • Create a "reverses outline", or schematic, of the text's layout.
  • Select the most relevant points.
  • Write a summar
  • Revise the summary


  • Read carefully
  • Think about what it's saying
  • Rewrite the gist of what the source says
  • Double check the original
  • Cite the author

Being able to manage the research process by taking good notes and meticulous records.

Using Sources to Generate Ideas:

  • Play the believing an doubting game: discover new applications and arguments, get in the habit of asking yourself questions when being accompanied with a new source.
  • Find a source with which you strongly disagree. Take note of everything you find fault with; clarifies where you stand. (note: controversy)
  • Create a table that compares and contrasts your sources: Helps you organize and lay out the information that has been gathered.
  • Pair two sources in conversation with each other. Imagining two incites together.
  • Look at one source through the "lens" of another source.

Page 5 Chapter 5 Notes

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