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SSI1-122: Ecotopia?: Getting Started

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Quick Review: Types of Sources

In academic research, it's important to be able to distinguish between different types of sources.  These differences often are contextual, meaning that a single source might fit in different categories depending on how you are using it and in what academic discipline you are writing.

Primary sources are the raw materials of scholarship.

Secondary sources report on or interpret primary sources.

Tertiary sources synthesize and present overviews of primary and secondary sources.

Scholarly sources present sophisticated, researched arguments using both primary and secondary sources and are written by experts.

Popular sources aim to inform or entertain and are intended for a general, non-specialized audience.  In academic writing, popular sources most often are analyzed as primary sources.

BEAM Framework

BEAM is an acronym intended to help students think about the various ways we might use sources when writing a researched argument. Joseph Bizup, an English professor at Boston University, outlined the framework in a 2008 article. The idea has since been refined and adapted by many others.

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Peer Research Advisor Hours

Fall 2020

Hannah Turner and Allie Highsmith are your Peer Research Advisors for the 2020-21 academic year!
Check back in early September for information about our new peer research advisors for the 2020-21 academic year, including their hours and ways to work with them!