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Library Workshops: Research Tools @ the Beach

Workshops are designed to help you at any phase of your paper writing process. Topics include finding scholarly research articles and web sites, getting started with paper writing, thesis formatting and how to cite your sources.

Find Articles

Search the Library Catalog (COAST)

Search COAST

Getting Started with Research

4 things to do BEFORE you start researching!


1. Get a Library Password…to get Library stuff from home or off campus!

Go to from any computer.


2. Pick a topic

Pick a manageable topic that meets the requirements of the assignment.

Topic: The use of steroids by college student athletes 


3. Pick keywords from your topic

The next step is picking keywords.  Keywords are the most "important" words in your research question.  Think of synonyms and other ways to describe your topic. For example:

Steroidsà doping, performance enhancing drugs, anabolic steroids

college student athletesà athletes, students, ncaa, football, basketball, baseball


4. Connecting your keywords

Use AND and OR to connect your keywords. AND combines different terms. OR combines synonyms. Always put ( ) around OR terms! à steroids AND athletes