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Starting Your Thesis (BMC)

Research advice for thesis writers in any discipline, based on the Bryn Mawr College Writing Center thesis workshops.

Footnote Chasing

Looking up sources from the bibliography of a relevant article, or looking up other sources that cited an article once it was published, are both good ways to trace the scholarly conversation on your topic over time.

Library databases, Google Scholar and other site often have links that make it easy to do this – look for links like “Works Cited”, “References”, “Related Articles”, “Cited By”, etc.; Here is a brief video tutorial from NCSU Libraries finding cited references in Google Scholar:

Advanced Search Techniques

Knowing where to search is just the first step. Once you’ve found databases on your topic, you will need to be able to do effective searches.

The University of Arizona Libraries has a short tutorial on effective boolean searching.

NCSU Libraries also has this brief video on refining your search strategy: