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How To Do Research

The Research Process

Video Thumbnail: Life in the Information Age
Video: Life in the Information Age

With so much information available, research can feel overwhelming. This guide will help you through every step of the research process so that you can build the skills you'll need to complete assignments in college and beyond.

Remember to come back to your topic regularly as you research. Your topic guides your strategy, but your research will also shape your topic. When in doubt, feel free to ask a librarian for help.

Research Strategy

How to structure your research process.

Research Topics

Coming up with a researchable topic.

Developing your Topic

Refining and focusing your research topic.

Background Research

Finding background information to help you focus your topic and plan your research.

Thesis Statements

Coming up with a focused thesis statement.


Researching "the other side" of an argument.

Missing Information

What information are you missing?

How Librarians Can Help

Librarians are experts at finding and evaluating information and are professionally trained to help you develop those skills. They can help you navigate the information sources, broaden or narrow your topic, manage your citations, and much more. Never hesitate to ask questions! There are many ways for you to get in touch: