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DCCL Orientation & Dissertation Workshop

Guide to FLITE's resources for DCCL students, especially those working on their dissertation.

Step by Step Process

The number of Hispanic students who attended college is increasing, but the number of students from this population that graduate is decreasing.

1. Brainstorm on my topic using background readings or personal knowledge to come up with terms that describe my topic.

  • You have one overarching question, but you probably will have two or three specific search components

2. Develop a search string for each of my searches 

  • Write down keywords and appropriate synonyms; mix and match like concepts

3. Pick which databases I'm going to search

  • Go to FLITE's Databases by Major, Databases A-Z, and this guide

4. Run the searches

5. Download articles that look promising

  • Save the PDF or article and the citation to citation management software & clean up the citation info


  • Save the PDF of the article in a logical folder; copy the citation to a Word or Google document

6. Note the subject headings and keywords used for promising articles

7. Read the abstract, introduction, & conclusion of the article; if it looks promising, record it in the article matrix

8. Run promising article titles through Google Scholar to see if other articles cited them (i.e. take your research forward)

9. Check the references of promising articles; locate the references that look promising (i.e. take your research backwards)