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Create My Questions

  • Know your purpose. What do you want or need to know? Ask good questions about your topic.
  • Form essential or guiding questions about your topic to guide your research.
  • Brainstorm subtopics you could investigate to help answer your essential questions.


Here are some examples of essential or guiding questions:

  • What makes a community?
  • How are animals important for human existence?
  • Why is water important?
  • What is sound?

As you find information, look back at the essential or guiding questions to keep you on the right track.

  • Does the information answer or relate to your questions?
  • Revise or redefine your questions, if necessary.

To learn more, watch this Choosing a Topic & Developing a Research Question video.


How to Choose Keywords

Keywords are your "key" to successful searching. Choose keywords carefully. Keywords (or search terms) determine what you will find.

  1. Write your topic as a phrase, sentence, or question to be answered.
  2. Circle or list the important words.
  3. Look at each word and think of possible synonyms (words that have similar meanings) or related words.
  4. Be sure to spell correctly.

To learn more, watch this Using Keywords video.


Next => Now that you have created your questions, it is time to plan your sources.