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COVID-19 as a Research Topic

This guide provides information on how and where to research COVID-19 (Coronavirus) as a topic for an assignment.

If your research topic is COVID-19 . . .

you should keep a few important things in mind.

The situation is constantly evolving

  • Information you find today might change by tomorrow

Scholarly research is underway

  • but probably not complete
  • scholarly articles on the current coronavirus situation may be difficult to find
  • conducting formal research studies takes time
  • publishing scholarly articles based on the results of research takes even longer

The situation is politically charged

  • Facts about the virus can be found, but you must use objective, data-driven sources
  • Objective sources will be based on fact and not try to cause a reaction in the reader (for example fear, anger, laughter, sadness)
  • Opinions on what to do and what effect the virus is having in the U.S. vary widely
  • Avoid sources that are emotional or angry, or that tell the reader what to think, feel or do

Know who wrote what you are reading

  • Find the author's name on the article. If the name is hyperlinked, follow the link and read about that author
  • If the author is listed but you can't find out anything about them from the article, Google them to learn who they are 
  • If there is no author, figure out who published the article (a government organization, a news site, etc)
  • Read the About Us or any information about the publisher that you can find linked from the article
  • If you can't find an About Us, Google the publisher to learn more about them and what kind of information they publish
  • If you can't learn enough about the author or publisher to fully trust that they are providing good information, don't use that source