ENG 2100: Writing I - Prof. Corwin

About This Site

The pages here will guide you through the research process. Look for the sample topic on the right side of the pages.

The Research Process

  1. You may have an initial idea. Chances are, that idea is too broad to work as a research topic. You'll need to narrow it down
  2. Start by doing background reading in a broad topic area so you can discover sub-topics related to that general interest.
  3. Now you've got a narrower, manageable topic.
  4. Once your topic is narrowed down significantly from where you began, then you're ready to look for sources just on that narrower, manageable topic.

Need Help?

Background Reading


  • Quick intro to topic
  • Exposes you to different aspects of a topic
  • Helps you brainstorm for ideas
  • Learning new terminology that will help you search for sources (keywords)

Where to Go for Background Reading

Sample Topic: Filipino Americans

The Initial Idea

Say that you're interested in the Filipino American community but don't have an idea beyond that. In this guide, you'll see how you can move from thayt general interest to a specific, manageable research topic.

Background Reading

Start with a search in the Gale eBooks database for "Filipino Americans"

Brainstorming for Ideas

From the search results in Gale eBooks, you realize that nursing is a very popular profession among Filipino Americans and you begin to wonder why that is the case. This is an interesting question to answer and a manageable topic for a research paper.

You also now have some useful background info on the history of Filipino American immigration to the United States that will be useful in your paper.

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