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El Paso Community College
Library Research Guides

Philosophy and Ethics: Ferrell: How Do I Get Started?

This guide introduces you to resources that will help you with your Philosophy class.

Choose a Topic

  • The first step is to choose a topic.

  • Use guidance from Mr. Ferrell as to topics you can choose from.

  • Then take a look at some of the resources we have that can help you:

    • Opposing Viewpoints in Context This resource provides a list of current issues and information as to the pros and cons of the issue. 

    • Credo Reference  This resource provides information on a lot of different topics.  You can search different Philosophy topics.

Keyword List

After you find a topic and look for background information, try coming up with a list of keywords you can use to search books, articles, and websites.


Childhood Obesity - obesity, overweight, bmi, children, pediatrics, adolescents

Gun Control - guns, firearms, laws, legislation, Second Amendment

These will be words you can put together to search for your topic.

For example a search could be:  gun control and second amendment

If you use words to search and don't get any hits, first check the spelling of the words and then try changing the words you are using.


Background Information

Once you find a topic to research, you will want to look for background information.  Background information provides you with an overview of your topic.  You can find out the key topics, issues, people who are associated with the topic, etc...

This gives you a good background on the topic before you jump into researching.

A good resource to use for background research is Credo Reference.  This resource provides you with information on a number of topics.

You can also search the internet for information on your topic.


Sources for your Paper

For your paper you can use any type of source.

You can use eBooks, articles from magazines, journals, and newspapers.  You can even use websites.

Please check with Mr. Ferrell as to the number of resources you need.

If your topic is recent, make sure you find updated information as things change fast.

For Example if you are researching Marijuana Legalization, you will want the most recent information as a lot of things have changed of the past couple of years.



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