Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

WRT 101 - West Campus - Ortiz: You Selected a Topic - What's Next?

Keywords to Start Your Search

After identifying your topic, begin selecting keywords to use in your research.

1. State your topic as a question. 

2. Identify keywords from your research question.

3. Identify synonyms for your keywords, as well as broader terms, narrower terms, and related terms that may help with your search.  It may help to use a thesaurus to find synonyms for your keywords. 

4. Use keywords and synonyms to find relevant books, articles, and websites about your topic.  As you read through articles and books, write down any additional related keywords that may be relevant to your topic.


Sample Research Question Keywords, synonyms
What are the psychological characteristics of athletes?
  • athlete psychological characteristics
  • psychology of athletes
  • athlete psychology
  • athletic mental health
  • sports psychology



Six Different Resources to be Used:

  1. One academic journal article
  2. One newspaper article
  3. One entry from an encyclopedia (for general background)
  4. One magazine
  5. One website, but only if it is from a trusted source (government; company or NGO) and with Professor approval
and one extra  "Wildcard" to make it six sources: one more of the above OR quotes from a book, movie, TV show, social media post - with Professor approval