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ESL Research Guide / Biography: Library Research


Researching World Leaders


Image Source: Global Leaders Today Online

Steps in the Research Process

Is this your first time doing research?  Just follow these eight steps.

  1. make sure you understand the assignment

  2. clearly state your topic

  3. think about the search words you will use

  4. select the library research databases you will use

  5. search for and select your sources

  6. collect the citations for your MLA Works Cited

  7. take notes from your sources

  8. create your presentation

MLA Handout is a website that I recommend - but we need to make sure Christina will allow it.  :)

It is easy to use.  You can print out your article so that you can read it and make notes.  It will also help you cite!  

Recommended Sources and Searching Tips

The purpose of this research guide is to help students in Christina Momono's ESL 6 class find credible and academic information sources.  


Start your research by writing down search words that describe the elements of your topic.  For example, when researching language learning you might try using these words: 

  • Put your leader's name together using quotes - "Nelson Mandela"
  • Use the word biography to find information about them

Search example:  "Nelson Mandela" AND biography


LIBRARY RESEARCH DATABASES - able to create MLA citations automatically

Reference Books (including encyclopedias) - concise, general background information; articles often written by experts who are university professors


  • eBook Collection - 150,000 ebooks selected for college and university researchers -- Don't worry about reading a whole book. Just look for small bits of information that you can use for your research.

Periodicals - magazines, newspapers, scholarly journals


  • Britannica Academic - Encyclopedia Britannica, plus a dictionary, thesaurus, world atlas, magazine and journal articles, images, and a guide to the Web's best sites. Includes a listen to feature. Cites images for you! (Great for Biographies too!)

Outreach Librarian

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Linda Keys
Contact preference: Email please :)
Spokane Community College
1810 N. Greene St.
MS 2160
Spokane, WA 99217

Getting Help from a Librarian

Not finding what you need?

Feeling frustrated?

Need help?

Then it’s probably time to ask a librarian for some help.

Contact me directly using the links in my profile.  Email me or schedule an appointment.  

SCC Librarians are also available for in-person help at the Library Reference Desk.

Monday - Friday 7:15 am - 3:30 pm.    

If you need immediate help, contact a librarian at any time using our online chat service.

24/7 live chatchat 

(Evenings and weekends you may be chatting with a librarian from another college. Ask for an SCC librarian to contact you for follow-up if needed.)