Skip To Main Content

Research and Inquiry Tools

Research and Inquiry Tools

question mark

Students learn new content, build information literacyand plagiarism-proof habits
(Click on the words in green to access the related video or document)


1) TEACHER/PARENT: Craft open-ended questions for students to answer. Decide citation style (MLA, APA, Chicago).
Examples from Physics Honors project: How is wind power generated? What are the advantages and disadvantages?

2) STUDENTS: Use lateral reading and advance searching skills to find several sources to answer each question. Before students can use an online website, they need to verify its credibility in at least two other websites. Students should then evaluate the usefulness of the information for their needs. Students make this process visible in a Schoology discussion/assignment or in an annotated bibliography

Use to generate citations (Remember: if you use our databases, the citations will be generated for you!)

3) TEACHER/PARENT: Review the students' sources and search process; give feedback until students have collected and evaluated all required sources. Then give each student approval to proceed with collecting information from the sources when they are ready.

4) STUDENTS: Use the notetaking template to collect information from the collected sources in an academically sound way. Look at the example to better understand how to collect information in an academically sound way. Students must use information from multiple sources to answer each question. Research is a conversation: this habit is vital for avoiding plagiarism and over-relying on one source.

5) TEACHER/PARENT: Review the students' notetaking documents to determine if students have used multiple sources to answer each question, documented where each fact comes from, and kept track of when they collected a direct quote (copy and pasted from source) or paraphrased (wrote information in their own words). Teacher/parent gives feedback on students' notes. 

Decide HOW (medium) and TO WHOM/WHERE (audience) students will communicate their findings. This could be an infographic, a research paper, a slide presentation, a song, etc.

6) STUDENTS: Using the information collected on the notetaking document, and following the assignment guidelines, decide how to best communicate your research. Always keep your audience in mind: What do they already know? What do they expect? How can you communicate clearly and concisely?

For more digital literacy lessons, check out all of John Green's Crash Course videos on YouTube.
If you have any questions about this process or resources, please contact me (cdrysdale@somersschools) through email or Schoology.