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U.S. History Research Guide

Primary and Secondary Sources

What is a primary source, and how do you find one? How does it differ from a secondary source?

Visit our Primary Sources Guide for more information and links to sources!

Develop a research plan

ASK QUESTIONS TO DEFINE YOUR TOPIC Or    A 'concept map' may be helpful: 

 Who?        What?       Where?       When?          

             Why?         How?          So What?

What is the definition?

What other words could be used to research this topic?

What are some causes ?

What are some results or consequences ?

What larger social or political issues are related to this topic?

research concept map showing a large circle reading 'what is required?' with smaller circles overlapping it with labels such as 'definition' and 'recent examples'[source https://classweb.gmu.edu/WAC/adjguide/academic_papers/identifying.html]