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PSYC300: Research Methods: Research Process

Research Process

  • Research doesn't happen in a straight line from start (assignment prompt) to finish (polished paper/presentation).
  • Research includes finding background information to help you shape your ideas.
  • Research incorporates analyses from journalists and scholars, whose ideas help you reframe and revise your research questions.
  • Research includes making evaluative decisions about which and whose perspectives to incorporate into your own scholarship.


The Information Cycle

From Topic to Research Questions


Learn more about narrowing a topic and developing a research question.

Information Sources

Information Need

Sources to Consult

Specific Examples

Overview of Topic

  • Encyclopedias
  • Annual overviews

Corsini encyclopedia of psychology   and behavioral science

Annual review of psychology



  • Dictionaries
  • Handbooks


APA college dict. of psychology

The Oxford handbook of cognitive psychology

Primary Sources (first hand or contemporary accounts)

  • Books
  • Digital Archives
  • Magazines/Newspapers
  • Videos

Search the library catalog

B.F.Skinner Foundation

Counseling and Therapy in Videos

Secondary Sources (comprehensive and/or detailed analyses)

  • Journal articles
  • Books
  • Some magazines

Search PsycInfo or PsycArticles

Search the library catalog with specific subjects.

How to write a report

  • Books
  • Website

Your psychology project : the essential guide 

Brief Guide (Harvard)