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Research Guides@Tufts

Digital Storytelling

Getting Started with Research

Research is a process.

Fundamental to that process is a careful engagement with primary and secondary sources. However, if you are new to a topic, it is best to start with reference sources (sometimes called tertiary sources). These sources, such as dictionaries, handbooks, and encyclopedias, provide overviews of topics by condensing and summarizing primary and secondary sources. On this page you will find reference sources which are useful for gaining an understanding of the background and context of your topic. Such an understanding will help you frame your research project.

If you don't find what you are looking for or need help navigating this guide or any of the resources it contains, don't hesitate to contact the author of this guide or Ask a Librarian.

Learning About an Environmental Problem

If you're just starting out your research, it's a good idea to consult an encyclopedia to learn and establish context about an environmental problem you're interested in:

  • AccessScience is an encyclopedia that gives easy-to-read background information about science topics.


You may also want to browse through environmental issues to spark an interest in a particular problem or group:

  • Gale in Context: Environmental Studies lists several environmental issues, in an easily browsable format. This resource is easy to read and provides an overview of each issue, as well as related news, academic journal articles, and podcasts on topics relating to climate change and the environment.

Digital Media Specialist

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Kimberly Forero-ArnĂ­as
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