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Choosing a Topic -- Looking for Ideas
Specialized databases and websites explain issues within broader contexts and from differing viewpoints. This helps with understanding the "big picture" and can often help with forming ideas for narrowing topics.
World News Digest Topics
News summaries and background articles compiled by World News Digest staff from reliable news and information sources. Includes current news stories from Reuters.
CQ Researcher This link opens in a new window
In-depth reports on popular national and global policy issues from 1991-present. Written by experienced journalists, footnoted, and professionally fact-checked.
Health and Wellness (Gale) This link opens in a new window
Physical and mental health topics.
Background Information -- Reference Collections
Need to look up a term, name, place, or event? Reference collections are great places to START the research process. Results are authoritative and trustworthy. Bonus--most include formatted citations at the bottom of each entry!
Digital encyclopedia of American politics and elections
St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture
Covers topics and persons in major areas of popular culture: film, music, print culture, social life, sports, television and radio, and art and performance (including theater, dance, stand-up comedy, and other live performance).
Youth Cultures in America
Provides coverage of the expressive genres of American youth and the way they have shaped public tastes and trends, such as music, dance, fashion, tattooing, body piercing, social media, and more. Features an exploration of life issues for youth that have entered into the headlines--for example, bullying, cliques, rites of passage, student protest and activism, child abuse, and drugs.
FREE New York Times Digital Subscription
The Writing Center is located in Walker Library, room 362. Visit or call 615-904-8237 to schedule an appointment.
Textbooks, assigned readings, practice tests, etc. Items are for use within the library for short check-out periods. You can scan or photocopy important pages!