Research Process Quick Guide

SBVC Library

Quick Guide to the Research Process 

Focus your topic as you search. Revise your search as you focus.

Read the assignment for

  • required topics
  • required source types

Choose search terms from

  • textbooks
  • class notes

Search the Library website ( for

  • books and ebooks
  • scholarly journal articles
  • newspaper and magazine articles
  • pro-con arguments
  • subject-specific encyclopedias

Browse results for relevant 

  • article and book titles
  • keywords and subjects
  • abstracts and summaries
  • tables of contents
  • terms in indexes

Too Many Results? Check options in the Refine Results menu

Too Few Results? Use broader search terms or try a different database

 Evaluate your topic and results

  • focus or expand your topic
  • use different search terms
  • consider a related topic
  • return to an earlier step of the research process

 Focus your topic as you search. Revise your search as you focus.

View the printable Research Process PDF.