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CMS 120: Public Speaking

Getting Started

Once you have selected a topic, start your research by reading broad, general articles on that topic. Reading general articles first will help you understand the basics so you can later understand detailed articles you will find later in your research.

For example, let's say you are watching an American football game for the first time. If you first read the general rules of the game, you would will better understand fans talking about "the offensive line is doing a horrible job protecting the quarterback in the pocket." That might sound like a detailed example, but every field and topic has its terminology. 

Reading the general articles can provide...

  • An overview of your topic.
  • Keywords and concepts that you can use to find additional resources.
  • bibliography of additional resources, including names and/or web pages for organizations and associations.
  • Ideas to help you narrow the focus of your speech.

Good places to look for overview articles and issue briefs from resources such as subject encyclopedias, and online library resources CQ Researcher and Opposing Viewpoints.

Tutorial: Getting started and Keywords