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Match your topic to the right types of sources
Your topic will often determine the best type of sources. For some, you may need to depend on websites and interviews. Other topics will be reported on in the news media. Still others will have scholarly journal articles or data sets that can be used.
- Working on a WCU campus issue/policy? Find the web pages of the department(s) who oversee that issue. The current policies should be stated and you may be able to identify someone to interview. Also consider searching the Quad (student newspaper) to see if the issue has been reported on. For articles about the issue on other campuses try Access World News Live, the Chronicle of Higher Education, or Inside Higher Ed.
- For a borough/local/regional issue/policy, local websites and officials will again be valuable sources. Also consider searching the Daily Local's website or our Philadelphia Inquirer database for news articles. You may also be able to find local data on some topics through our Policy Map database.
- For topics related to the business/corporate world, your best bet is to use Business Source Premier to find scholarly and magazine articles from business-specific journals and magazines. You might also want to use National Newspapers to look for news articles from major newspapers.
- If you are looking at a national or global issue, you will probably find a mix of scholarly and news articles. Our Library Search tool is a great place to look for sources.
Some databases to consider
Search the full text of The Quad and previous WCU student newspapers. This database covers 1892-2011. For 2012 to present, search the current Quad website: https://www.wcuquad.com/
Inside Higher Ed
Another (free online) magazine that focuses on issues in higher education.
Local/community issue or policy:
Daily Local News
This local newspaper isn't in any of our databases, so you can only search their website. Articles go back to 2001.
Philadelphia Inquirer (Image Edition) This link opens in a new window
Search more than 35 years of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania history with the Philadelphia Inquirer Collection. Coverage from 1981 through today, including full-text, web-only content and full-color image edition.
PolicyMap This link opens in a new window
Online geographical information database with data on housing, education, mortgage originations, jobs and more. Create custom maps, tables, and reports.
View tutorials for more help:
Creating a Map
Creating a Community Profile Report
(The Reinvestment Fund)
Business/corporate issue or policy:
Business Source Complete This link opens in a new window
Search full-text journals, books, case studies, company profiles, SWOT analyses, and industry, economic & market reports.
Regional Business News This link opens in a new window
Coverage for full-text business publications, on a regional level, for the United States and Canada.
U.S. Major Dailies This link opens in a new window
Formerly called National Newspapers Core.
Search or browse full text issues of:
-Los Angeles Times (1997-current)
-New York Times (1980-current)
-Wall Street Journal (1984-current)
-Washington Post (1987-current)
National/international issue or policy: