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Getting Started with your Paper / Project

Tips form UMSL's Reference Librarians on researching papers and projects

Evaluate Sources

 You will want to use the best sources of information you can find. Several criteria should be kept in mind when selecting material including

  1. The credentials of the author
  2. The currency of the item (how recent it is),
  3. Is the source objective?
  4. The quality of the research - has the article been reviewed by others in the field (peer-review)?

Internet sources should be evaluated carefully.  Please consult the following guide.

Cite Your Sources

Cite Sources: You will need citations for information used in your paper. Most professors will assign a citation style that they will expect you to follow in your paper. The library has copies of many style manuals including:

  • Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA)
  • MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers
  • A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations (Turabian)
  • The Chicago Manual of Style

Ask at the Reference Desk for help finding the guide you need.  An online citations guide is also available: