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HU 3900: Inquiry Seminar: Philosophy and the City: Urban Humanities: Background Information

Concept Mapping

Concept mapping is a way to visualize your topic and break it down into smaller more manageable research areas. Use concept mapping at the beginning of the research process to help you find different aspects of your topic that you may want to focus on. You can use online reference sources to help you find different concepts and keywords related to your research topic. You do not need to include every single possible angle of your topic. Your concept map for one topic will probably look different from another person's concept map on the same topic. You can continue to build on your concept map throughout the research process. 

Starting Your Research: Encyclopedias and Background Information

Look for background information in encyclopedias and other online sources. Use these sources to find research topics or to narrow down a research topic. Background sources can also help you learn the vocabulary used to describe your topic. This new vocabulary will help you with your keyword searches. 

These aren’t necessarily sources that you will cite in your paper but rather sources to provide you with a general understanding of your topic and relevant vocabulary.

Helpful sources for background information include: