Comm 204 Public Speaking: Databases

Principles and practices of effective oral communication; analysis of the speaking-listening process; selection and organization of speech materials; use of new presentation technologies.

Search Tips

Once you have identified your Speech topic generate a list of words, or Keywords that are related to your topic. For example, your topic, "school violence and video games? What aspect will you inform your audience? 

Use AND, OR, NOT to connect your phrases/keywords

to locate both morality AND norms

to locate either word discourse OR commentary

NOT will retrieve the first word, debate NOT argument

 

Keywords and phrases for violence: violence, bullying, peer pressure

Keywords and phrases for schools: school, high school, middle school, primary education

Keywords and phrases for video games: electronic games, electronic toys, video games, games

Sample keyword searches for a database:

violence and schools and electronic games

 

Types of sources:

Academic, Peer Review or Scholarly Journals

Magazines

Trade Publications

 

Addtional databases

Evaluating Sources

In the research process, evaluating sources is vital. Consider the following questions in order to effectively evaluate and gain a more critical understanding of your sources.

Author Authority  
Who created the item?  What is his or her affiliation?  What is his or her relationship to the information contained in the source?

Audience and Purpose
Who is the intended audience?  Why was the item created?

Accuracy and Completeness
Is the evidence reliable?  Are the important points covered?  How does the source compare to other similar sources?  What may have been left out?

Footnotes and Documentation
Are the author's sources in secondary and reference literature clearly identified with complete citations to allow you to find the original source yourself?

Perspective and Bias
How do the author's bias and perspective inform the arguments and evidence presented?

 

Adapted from NYU's Primary Sources LibGuide and The Information-Literate Historian by Jenny L. Presnell (New York:  Oxford University Press, 2007).

Oral Histories

Communication related Research Databases

Many of the databases listed below are subject specific. Can you identify one database that you can search for articles on your topic? Begin your research: