Sometimes, the best place to start your research is with what you already know. Now, if you are new to the world of Web research, this might not be the case. But for those of you who spend a great deal of time on the Web, you're slowly building your own personal directory of your favorite sites. In some cases, it can be better to start your research, not by visiting a search engine or a directory, but by delving into your own archive of Web sites you've bookmarked.
Here are some useful resources you may have already encountered in your Web travels:
- Online newspapers and magazines provide comprehensive, up-to-the-minute coverage of world events and issues. Many also include multimedia featuresincluding news footage and animated mapsthat supplement and enhance traditional print articles. Examples: USA Today, CNN, Time, and The New York Times.
- University and library Web sites, as well as other well-established organizations, sometimes host or sponsor subject-specific research sites with articles from experts, primary-source materials, and links to other quality sites. Examples: The Library of Congress, NOVA, American Studies at the University and National Geographic.
- Many government agency Web sites are worth visiting for their primary sources, in-depth information from experts, statistics, and other educational materials. Examples: U.S. National Archives & Records Administration, NASA, and the Environmental Protection Agency.
- Some museums offer online exhibits that showcase certain collections, making it possible for you to view digital images of Monet's works or ancient Greek and Roman artifacts. Examples: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Smithsonian Institution, and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
As you continue to surf the Web, bookmark these and other valuable sites. Even if you don't need them at the time, chances are that when you're doing a research paper next semester, you'll wish you had bookmarked that wonderful site you accidentally stumbled upon months earlier.
Tip: Consider visiting the links featured on a Web site you've bookmarked. If the Web site has quality materials, the sites it links to might also have materials worth checking out.
Example: NOVA's Pyramid Online Adventures features many useful materials and resources, including interviews with archaeologists documenting their digs in Egypt, the history of Egyptian pyramids, and information on archaeologists' theories and discoveries.
Try These Out!
Visit the Recommended Web Sites section of Web Research Guide to explore other subject-specific sites.
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