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Introduction to Research

How to turn your topic into a search, search through library resources and the web, evaluate what you found, improve your writing and citation, and get help from a librarian.

Library Resources

Library Databases vs. Google

Watch the short video below (for real though, what is a library database?), then dive into library resources.

If you're researching a historical aspect of Memphis, check out McWherter Library's Special Collections.

Mini-guides for Memphis music, education, crime/violence, urban parks, and urban art.

Background Information

Background Information

Start exploring potential topics using these databases:

Multidisciplinary Library Databases

Multidisciplinary Databases

Search for your topic in these huge multidisciplinary databases to find peer-reviewed articles, news, and more:

Subject-Specific Library Databases

Subject-Specific Databases

You may find useful scholarly, peer-reviewed information in several of these databases (if you don't, try one of the hundreds of databases you have access to!):


Statistics and data

Use numbers, graphics, and maps to back up your argument. Some of these are links to government websites, and some are links to library databases. You have access to all of these:

Memphis News


Newspaper articles can be the best connection between your topic and how it relates directly to Memphis. Dig through these using microfilm on McWherter's 2nd floor (old-school!), using Google's site tool, or using the links below.