EDP 190/256 Vermillion

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Step 1: Selecting Databases

ERIC Article Database

Requires your Miami Unique ID & Password when connecting from Off-Campus

The best database for finding education related articles is ERIC, however, there are a few others that may also be useful. You can search them all at once using the steps below.

  1. Click the blue “Choose Databases” link
  2. Place checks in the boxes beside Education Research Complete, Professional Development Collection, Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection, and PsycINFO
  3. Click the OK button

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screen shot of the list of available databases with checks next to ERIC, Education Research Complete, Professional Development Collection, Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection, and PsycINFO.

Step 2: Entering Search Terms and Limiting by Publication Details

Next, enter your search terms. The top line should have your exceptionality. The second line should look like this:

“teaching strategies” OR “teaching methods” OR “instructional methods” OR “instructional strategies”

Click search, and use the limiting options on the left sidebar to narrow your search results. It is important to limit to articles no more than 10 years old. 

screenshot showing location of limiter options

Step 3: Narrowing by Topic:

If your results list is still too large, you can use the subject limiter to further narrow your results by topic.

  1. Click Subject to expand the list.
  2. Then click the blue “Show More” link to open a larger list of options to choose from.
  3. Place checks in the boxes beside the narrower topics you would like to use.
screenshot showing how to narrow a search by subject screenshot depicting which areas to look at in the subject limiter box

Step 4: Choosing and Citing Articles

From your shortened list of articles:

  1. Click on titles that sound interesting.
  2. Read the abstract to see whether the article has information you can use for this assignment.
  3. Check for full text of the article. Use the Find It! button if there is no full text link.
  4. Use the tools on the right of the screen to print, email, save, or cite your articles.

screen shot of detailed article citation

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Evaluating Websites

Let’s face it–there is a lot of information available on the Internet! How do you determine if it’s GOOD information, especially if you want to use it for research?

Put it through the CRAAP test! Check over the website’s Currency, Relevance, Authority, Accuracy, & Purpose. Basically, ask yourself the “who, what, when, & why” of the whole thing.


  • Where does the information come from?
  • Does the author provide references or a bibliography?
  • If references are listed, are they from primary or secondary sources? Are the references themselves trustworthy?
  • Do the links to reference work, or are they broken?


  • How will using this source contribute to your research?
  • Is this type of resource permitted by your professor?


  • Who wrote this information, and why?
  • What credentials or expertise does the author have in the subject area?
  • Is the information fact-based, or opinion-based?
  • Who owns or is sponsoring the website?


  • Is the information contained in this site correct?
  • How accurate is other information within the site?


  • Who is the intended audience? Is it for scholars, the community, or private groups?
  • Does the site include a mission statement?
  • What is the purpose of the site? Is it to inform, instruct, persuade, or to sell?

And, you’ll also want to check


  • Is the information biased? If so, does the author acknowledge these biases?
  • Does the author present alternative points of view?
  • Does the website sponsor have any vested interests that could cause bias?


  • When was the site last updated?
  • Have there been any new developments or changes in that subject since it was created? Is it outdated?
  • How current are the sources listed as references?

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Miami University Online Catalog
Search By:
Keyword, Author, Title or Subject Heading
Limit By: General Topic and Where The Item is Located
Look For: Call Number, Location, and Availability
Request Item for delivery from other MU Libraries
Continue Searching in OhioLINK for unavailable titles

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Q & A on APA

Q. How do I format my paper according to APA style?  What spacing and font should I use?  What should my title page look like?
A. General APA Formatting Info

Q. How do I cite information in the body of my paper?  What should a quote or paraphrase look like in my paper?
A. In-Text Citation Basics

Q. What should my Reference list at the end of the paper look like?  What should the header for this page look like?  In what order should my references be listed?
A. Reference List Basics

Q. How do I cite a book, article, website, etc. on my References page?
A. Books  |  Articles  |  Websites and Other Electronic Resources

Annotated Bibliographies

An annotated bibliography is a list of citations to the sources you found with a brief paragraph that SUMMARIZES and EVALUATES each source. For this class, the citations should adhere to APA style. The summary should give the reader a good understanding of the main points of the article. The evaluative portion of the annotation should address the article’s usefulness or relevance to your topic, describe the author’s credibility, and include some critical analysis of the article.

For a more detailed description and examples of an annotated bibliography, click one of the links below.
Annotated Bibliographies from the Purdue OWL
Cornell University Library guide to annotated bibliographies

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