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DMS_Research Course_Historical Biography_Rota: Getting Started

Purpose of This Guide

The purpose of this guide is to help you find better information faster so you can hand in a good project. This guide will show you how to break down research tasks into more managemable chunks. Each "tab" will help you through various parts of the process.  

Research steps

 FYI: The steps do not have to be done in order, however, you need to do each one for a complete project. Follow the tabs above through each one of the Big6 steps.

Welcome Ms. Rota & students!

 Assignment: You are a historical biographer writing an article for Smithsonian Magazine. For the upcoming American Revolution issue, you need to choose a significant person from this time period and explain his/her actions that contributed to the development of America’s political culture.  

You will include:

  • an individually researched and written report about a self-selected person from the American Revolution

  • evidence of your person’s contributions to the development of the American political culture

  • a typed report, correctly formatted

  • a bibliography of at least three source citations, including print and non-print materials

  • Optional:  graphics can be included in the written report

Helpful technology tools

Consider using . . .

  • The Research Project Calculator - Create a new account and login to save & share your assignments, take notes, receive email reminders, and more. 
  • KWHL graphic organizer: K = What you KNOW about the subject, W = What you WANT to learn, H = HOW yu can learn more (sources where additional information on a topic can be found), L = What you LEARN as you read, listen, and view.
  • Webbing - Brainstorm questions or key words to help you define what information needs to be gathered. 

Consider making a SCHEDULE!

Write up a schedule with a series of milestones to reach by a certain date (read an encyclopedia article on my topic by December 1) and stick to it. You will pace yourself and each step you reach will give you a sense of accomplishment.

Subject Guide

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Lee Anne Clauer
2727 North Ferry St.
Anoka, MN 55303
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Google vs. Wikipedia

Google and Wikipedia are used by millions of people to look up information.


learning how to use the library and library information resources (print and online) will help you find more scholarly resources and will save you time. These resources are not free (like Google and Wikipedia) but are paid for through tax dollars.

Work smarter, not harder!