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This guide is intended to assist students with research on any topic.


NOT SURE WHERE TO START? If you're feeling stressed and don't know where to start, try Mrs. Frech's suggestions for where to start for this particular assignment.

1) IDENTIFY SEARCH TERM(S): What are you researching? You don't want to waste time and get you want to do an effective search right from the start, which means finding the right search term(s). Don't keep trying the same term(s) if you're not getting results. Map out optional words/terms/phrases before you begin. Try some simple tricks, like the following: Google *topics associated with ____* OR *terms associated with ____* OR *issues associated with ____* OR *synonyms associated with ____* etc. Also, take your time when you're searching on Google or databases, and look at the phrases that pop up under what you're entering. When you do this, you'll get additional search terms and ideas and combinations of phrasing to use. You can also find some additional tips under "SEARCHING: Tips" tab above. Just keep trying different words and/or combinations until you find what you need!! 

2) PRINT RESOURCES: You might luck out and find a book right here in the Padua Library. To check, go to the above tab: "PADUA LIBRARY: Destiny Library Catalog." Correctly spell your topic term & use "keyword" search option for best results. You can also check out the "PUBLIC LIBRARY" link if you aren't having any luck finding resources here.

3) DATABASES: Many research options under this LibGuide's tabs are dependent on topic, but for any academic paper, you should first explore this tab: "DATABASES: List of All Padua Databases". Teachers prefer and may even require databases over general websites, because databases contain academic information that has been peer reviewed and evaluated for authority, accuracy, and currency. Plus, citations are provided. So here are some Database Tips:

  • SAVING DATABASE INFO: To save info from databases, you must save the entire article directly in your Google Drive (URL's do not work for databases, so be careful!!!!). So remember: SAVE DATABASE INFO by SENDING IT RIGHT TO YOUR GOOGLE DRIVE!!!
  • LEARN TO NAVIGATE: Think of research as a game of skill. Learning to navigate these types of sites is a bit overwhelming but manageable. The goal is always to go to the best resources for your topic. When you have a subject specific topic, you want to look for databases suited to that topic. 
  • HOVER FOR INFO: Hover over database names to see which topics are covered in that database.
  • BRUIN BEAR SYMBOL: a bear symbol next to a database or website means it's commonly used by Padua students.
  • GALE: Gale databases are highly suggested (and a fav of Padua students) for any academic topic because they are designed for student use. Gale makes it easy to save and cite info. Gale's "Power Search" & "Student Resources in Context" are good general first stops.
  • INFOHIO: After Gale, try the INFOhio Databases. "ISearch" and "Explora" are good general first stops (but be sure you click on the green OPEN button to get into the site).
  • HELPFUL DATABASE FEATURESBe sure to utilize helpful database features such as the following:
    • Utilize Advanced Search features and/or topic finders/helpers.
    • Utilize filters to find what you want (academic journals or images or primary sources, etc.).
    • Explore extra/bonus features like listen & translate & automatic citation features. 

4) GOOGLING & GENERAL WEBSITES: If you have a pop culture or news-type topics, you may end up in general websites. You need to be more cautious about your sources when using these in regards to the following: verifiable publisher, current publication date, bias of info, etc. Here are some more quick tips:

  • SAVING WEBSITE INFO: Open a doc and save (copy & paste) the URL's of website articles to get back to them. (Important: URL's DO NOT WORK for databases. Be sure you know how to save database info (see Database info above).
  • Before you jump to Google, first explore "WEBSITES: Suggested for Various Areas" on this LibGuide, which provides some helpful websites/resources.
  • If you have to try Google and your teacher permits general websites, be sure to DO A BETTER GOOGLE SEARCH by trying some of the following
    • use the word "and" to help you get better info (example: *texting and teens and accidents and statistics and 2019-2023*)
    • look for .edu/.gov/.org by typing them next to your term (example: *organ donation .org .edu .gov*)
    • use quotation marks around multi-word terms (this tip is often hit or miss)(example: *cuban missile crisis*)
    • You can also try Google Scholar, which sometimes provides full articles, but other times may only have abstract. (Hint: click on the pdf symbol to the right of the article (if provided) and not on the article name for better chances of access). 
  • If you need more help, check out the "Searching Tips" tab above.

5) PRIMARY RESOURCES: If you can't find primary sources on any of the databases that Padua provides, you'll need to expand your horizons. This is where a public library card will really come in handy. See the "SOURCES: PRIMARY vs. SECONDARY" tab above. (Remember to filter by date of event to find primary sources regarding your particular topic.)

FRIENDLY REMINDER: There are many options to consider depending on your specific topic, so if you are confused or need additional help, know that you are always welcome to stop up or gmail Mrs. Frech. 







Access LibGuides, Padua Databases, and the Padua Library Catalog at home or from anywhere outside of Padua via computer or any mobile device by doing any of the following:

  • MyPad > Groups > Padua Library
  • > Academics > Library
  • Google "Padua LibGuides" in search engine (just make you select our school). 


You will most likely need Usernames/Passwords for Padua's "DATABASES" when accessing them anywhere outside of Padua, which I cannot publicly share on this page, so find the Passwords/Usernames by doing the following:

  • MyPad > Group > Padua Library > Quicklinks > Database Passwords
  • Note: You can save the PW Chart to your Google Drive if you would like.