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Writing A Research Paper

Sources and Where to Find Them: Books

  • Books

    • Books provide detailed histories, insights, and analysis of topics and events. However, they may not be up to date with the latest trends and research.  
    • There are two ways to get books through Pepperdine.

    • Pepperdine Libraries provide access to thousands of e-books, spanning all subject areas. Check out our guide on e-books:, which covers Pepperdine's major e-book providers. You can search for e-books using the Library Catalog or on the providers' websites. The guide also includes an e-book search bar to search for e-books in the catalog specifically.
  • When searching for books, there are a couple of useful strategies to start with:

    1. If you already have a relevant book or article in hand, use its bibliography to help find other sources.

    2. Use the "More like this" link to find other books within your subject area.

    3. Think of synonyms or variations on spelling and try an OR search:

  • theater OR theatre
  • teenager OR adolescents
  • For some literary research, it's essential to track a particular author whose name may have varied throughout his/her lifetime or publication history. In these cases, pay attention to cross-references in the catalog when you do an Author or Subject search for a name. Keep all name variants in mind when you search for other catalogs and databases to ensure that you are finding all relevant resources.

Sources and Where to Find Them: Journals

  • Journals 
    • Journal articles provide in-depth information on topics and are shorter than books. They often offer the latest information on a subject. 
    • Below is a video and step-by-step tutorial on how to use Pepperdine Libraries Databases and E-Journals feature.
    • Using the Pepperdine Libraries databases and e-journals resource can help you find journals relevant to your topic.