Research Process

Guide to the research process.

Research Process

This guide will help you begin thinking about the research process, especially as it relates to Monmouth University Library resources. The guide maps out some of the basic phases of a successful research process, providing tips and videos to help you complete your research project.


Research Process Infographic

The Research Process  (The graphic shows 5 steps of the research process in a circle, around an icon of a computer. Inside the computer it says Research Is a Process.)  Research is not always a one-way process. It is iterative, which means you may need to reflect and repeat steps at certain points. As you move through the steps, especially in an academic setting, don’t be afraid to ask questions, start over, and ask for help!  Step 1: Decide on your question/topic: Review your assignment & determine a topic to explore. What questions should you ask to explore that topic well?  Step2: Locate background info: Look for easy to read sources. Start with an internet search, books, magazines, newspapers, or encyclopedia articles.   You might refine your question at Steps 2 or 3.  Step 3: Find relevant information: Search for information in sources most related to your topic. Use the library databases, Google Scholar, government sources, etc.  Step 4: Read, Evaluate, & Adjust Searching: Do the sources that you found answer your questions? If not, adjust your searches and locate ones that do.  Do you need more evidence for your argument? Go back to Step 3.  Step 5: Organize, Write, & Cite: Take notes on each source, write your paper to answer your questions, and cite information you found.   Adapted from "Research Steps (Infographic)" by Jessica Kiebler, Pace University, under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) License. 

Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike (CC BY-SA) License Logo  Parts of this guide have been modified from "The Research Process" by Jessica Kiebler, Pace University, under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike (CC BY-SA) License.