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*Research and Writing: Integrated Skills & Strategies*

Welcome! This guide will help you develop your research and writing skills by providing foundational knowledge of the iterative research and writing process as well as manageable steps for breaking down and navigating college research projects.

Still Struggling?

Conversing with someone else about your research and writing process can be incredibly helpful.  Contact staff at McKillop Library or the Writing Center using the links below.

Getting Started with Books

There are several great places where you can start looking for books on your topic.  

Finding Books with Keywords

As you begin to look for books on your topic, you want to put the keywords you've brainstormed into to catalog's search box.  If you were interested in exploring how attitudes towards tattoos and other body art have evolved in America, you could start out by search "tattoo AND America."  For more information about this step, see this guide's Creating Search Statements page.

library catalog search screenshot


*Tip: If you want to just see what is available at McKillop Library, you can select "Salve Regina University Library" in the left toolbar.  However, if you find books or articles that you want and the library does not have access to them, you can always request them through interlibrary loan (

Finding Books with Subject Terms

Once you locate a relevant source for your research, look under the "Description" section of the catalog record for the subject terms.  A subject term is a standardized word or phrase that describes the main idea of the source.  These terms are hyperlinked in the catalog.  If you select one of these hyperlinked subject terms, the catalog will generate another result list with additional resources that share the same subject term.  As with your keywords, make sure to take note of especially helpful subject terms as you conduct your research.  

library catalog subject terms screenshot