Need to find a topic for a research paper?

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Finding a Topic for your research paper with Credo Reference

Choosing your topic for research can seem harder than writing the paper itself.  I tell my students to choose something that interests you.  Do not choose a topic that you think is going to be easy because if you lack interest in the topic the research process will be harder.   If you can’t think of a topic look through your course textbook for a subject. If you are still stumped try out Credo reference.

To access Credo reference go the Kirk Library homepage at and click on the “Databases” tab and click on Credo Reference. If you are on campus you have direct access to the databases. If you are off campus you will be asked to sign in with your student ID (starts with a 910) and your last name.

From the Credo Reference homepage click on the “Find Topic Pages” link to be directed to topics listed either by category or alphabetically. For example the “Social Sciences” page lists 1,445 topics to choose from. Once you choose a general topic you can narrow it down by using Credo’s interactive concept map. From Credo’s homepage click on the “Concept Map” tab and type in your topic. It  takes about a minute to load.  Then the fun begins.

“The Concept Map is a visual map that displays how search terms and topics in Credo Reference are interconnected. The Concept Map displays the connections between search results in a visual, interactive and easy-to-use format. It enables users to quickly find information when they don’t know what to look for, when they need topic ideas for papers or research projects, or want to expand their knowledge of a given area.”  “Credo Reference’s Concept Map enables you to quickly find information when you don’t know exactly what to look for or want to expand your knowledge of a given area.”


One thought on “Need to find a topic for a research paper?

  1. This is a great resource for the early stages of research. So often students jump right into looking for articles but starting here can save them time in the long run. It helps you develop your topic which makes for much easier article searching. Thanks for posting this, Dale!

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