History Day Workshop

How should  I begin my research?

Primary source research is often in-depth and time-consuming. Be prepared to travel to the source. If it can be borrowed via Interlibrary Loan you will still need to take into consideration the length of time it will take to arrive. Many historical documents are now available only on microfilm, which can be slow.

GET BACKGROUND INFORMATION FIRST: Find out what the issues surround the topic you are interested in. Analyze how other authors have interpreted it and use this as a base for developing your own conclusions. Examine secondary sources about your subject and take note of which primary sources the author/s used.


Defining X Beginning X Locating X Evaluating

Comments: Tanya Zanish-Belcher, Head, Special Collections Department
Copyright 2001, Iowa State University. All rights reserved.
Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library