We Gotcha Covered
Where Do I Start?
There are plenty of research sites out there. Two really good ones are Ebsco Host and Mid-Continent Public Library Database. You will need a Library card number to unlocked the sites at Mid-Continent. Use the school library card listed below. These two websites will have everything you need for research, Follow the link at the bottom for even more awesome resources!
Library Card #-20005001149413
Alright I'm at a Site now what?
Now that you are at a website you will need to know about Key Words to find exactly what you want. Lets pretend that you are researching about red eyed tree frogs and you want to know what they eat. In this scenario you decide to use ebsco host, so when you get to ebsco host you click the words that say "advanced search" . Your question was "what do red eyed tree frogs eat" so the key words are Red eyed tree frogs and Eat. So Red eyed Tree frogs would go in the first bar and eat would go in the second bar and maybe you would want to put prey in the third bar so that you don't get what eats tree frogs and just what tree frogs eat!
Are you sure this is right?
Now that you have your info you need to make sure it is accurate. There are some criteria you can use to see if a site is accurate. Criteria 1: What is the URL? After the site does it say, .com, .edu, .gov, or .org? If it is followed by a .edu or a .gov its a pretty good sign that it is accurate. However that doesn't mean that a .com or .org site cant be accurate but just to make sure you should probably put it through criteria 2. Criteria 2: Who wrote it? If a reliable source wrote it such as National Geographic, then you know that you can trust this information and you will be able to put it in your informational writing. Criteria 3: When was it written? The more recent it was written, most likely the better the information is. Scientist are always coming up with new information. For example, the information from a passage from 8 years ago has probably changed. Consider these criteria when finding credible websites.
What's The Difference?
The difference between quoting, paraphrasing, and summarizing is quite simple. Quoting is giving credit to the writer for using their exact words. Paraphrasing is rewriting an idea that you found in the passage in your own words. Also, Summarizing is rewriting in your own words the main ideas of a passage.
What if I don't paraphrase or quote?
If you do not paraphrase or quote you are "Plagiarizing." Plagiarism is a crime! Plagiarizing is when you write down someone else ideas and pass them off as your own. This can put you in jail and ruin your reputation. But don't worry, as long as you paraphrase and quote you will be fine! : )
Above is a great example of a MLA citation