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EES 090 Exploration of Inner Space Fall 2021

Prof. McDermott

Class Exercise

Class exercise: finding sources for the 'Marine Biodiversity Discovery' essay

Ask the science librarian for help if you have difficulty finding sources as you work on your paper.


Read the class writing assignment in CourseSite. It is due October 8. Today you'll just learn techniques for finding resources to use when you write it.


Go to the page "Scholarly versus Popular" and read the information there. 


For your essay and presentation, find a topic from the list of 9 below of discoveries in marine biodiversity. You'll be finding resources to cite in a three page essay about a discovery that relates to one of these topics:

  •     The role of bacteria in oxygen production on Earth
  •     Hydrothermal vents
  •     Whale falls
  •     Cold seeps
  •     Deepest living organism
  •     The majority of animals are bioluminescent: why?  What are the functions of bioluminescence? 
  •     'Living fossils:' in the ocean, e.g., coelacanths and crinoids.  You may include others.
  •     Longest-living sea creatures
  •     Deep sea corals


Go to the "worked example" in the box below and review it quickly. It's the example from class of how to find a popular article that references a scholarly study. 


Now go to the page of this guide that offers sources of popular articles. Check the help documentation for whatever database you select for examples of how to search the database(s) you choose. You'll probably see many of the same or similar techniques for searching that the tutorial covered.

Find a newspaper, magazine, or a website with a popular article that mentions a discovery in your topic.   For example, "last week researchers at XYZ published a study in Journal ABC about their new discovery of 123."

Evaluate its credibility by using the criteria under "Evaluating Web Resources" on the Background Information page (the "CRAPP" test criteria).  These criteria apply to any resource you find on the web, but also give ideas for evaluating the quality of a newspaper or magazine article.


Now find the scholarly article that the popular article reports. For this purpose, use whatever clues the the popular article gives. Tip: watch the tutorial about "Have Citation, Find Article". The tutorial mentions ordering articles via ILLiad; you don't need to do that at this point. Later on, though, you might want to use ILLiad. Make sure you sign up to use it; again, see the tutorial about this.

Put the clues into Google Scholar. See the worked example in the box below to see how to do this.  

You may find that the article is not available full text. For this exercise today, you don't need to order the article via ILLiad (interlibrary loan). Later on, when you actually write your paper, you may want to.


Now that you have the scholarly article, use Web of Science to find another scholarly article about the same topic. If you find an article you like, look or articles that cite an article that you find. This is a great way to find other citations.

Tweak the search if you need to refine it, then run the search in Web of Science again. For help in doing  a focused search, look at this guide to searching.


See if you find a review article that helps you understand your topic. Some places to go:


Ask yourself: how does the popular article you find differ from the scholarly articles you found?  For ideas, go back to the page "Scholarly versus Popular" that you read.


Now find background information that helps you understand technical terms or concepts that appear in the articles you find or the technology that was used in making the discovery. See the page of this guide "Background Information". Don't use this information as a reference/citation in your paper; just use it as a way to help you understand your topic better.    

Does the source you found satisfy the "CRAPP" test criteria?  


The assignment asks you to find 2 visuals in your essay. They can include: photographs, schematics, and/or maps. Go to the Finding Visuals page of this guide. Try using the Creative Commons search database there.


Go to the Citing Your Work page of this guide and read it over.  The assignment lets you select a citation style to use. Use one of the resources at the citing library guide linked there. The key is to find examples of citations, e.g. for a journal article, and use them as examples. TIP: see the note on the Citing Your Work page about using Google Scholar.

Worked Example

Here is a worked example of how to go from a popular article, to a scholarly article. This is the example we did in class.

Go to Research Library. This is just one of the possible sources for a popular article.  In the Advanced Search page, put in this search: 

hydrothermal and vent*

Under "Source Type" on the same page, select  popular sources such as Magazines and Newspapers.  (You can also select "blogs, podcasts and websites", and "wire feeds".) At this point, you are looking for *popular* articles, so don't select scholarly articles.

Put the results in descending order by date of publication.

An article that comes up is:

Fossils may be oldest-known archaea
Wilke, Carolyn. Science News; Washington Vol. 200, Iss. 3,  (Aug 14, 2021): 15.

Use Lehigh Links to get to the full text of the article.

In this popular article, you'll find clues about how to find the scholarly article where the research was published.

Look in this popular article for clues that will help you find the article.

For example,

  • the name of an investigator is given  Cavalazzi
  • the journal in which this was published was Science Advances  
  • it was published in 2021 (July 14).


  • Go go Google Scholar
  • Select hamburger icon, upper left.
  • Select the advanced search.

TIP: In the tutorial , see the slide (with a video) titled "Have Citation, 

Now you can find the full text of the scholarly article.

  • Put in as the author: Cavalazzi
  • Put in the journal: Science Advances
  • Put in years 2021.

Click on the first file below to see how to do this.

Click on the second file below to see the search result.

Now find the full text of the article.

To do so, look for Lehigh Links. You might have to click on the double arrows to see them. If you don't see Lehigh Links, follow the instructions in the video in the tutorial slide  "Have Citation, Get Article" for making Lehigh Links visible in Google Scholar.

NOTE: if you don't see the full text of the article, then ILLiad is available (interlibrary loan--see tutorial.) You don't need to order articles via ILLiad at this point, until you decide that you actually need an article to finish the assignment.

Alternatively, you can go to the online catalog (center of page, here), do a journal search on Science Advances, and then find the issue of the journal for July 14, 2021. Look at the table of contents for the articles there and see if you can find the article. 

Now go to Web of Science and try this search: archaea and fossil* and hydrothermal. Don't forget to look for articles that cite an article that you find. This is a great way to find other citations.

After doing that, then restrict the search to review articles, which review the current state of research in a topic and more bibliography about the overall topic.

Look for background information sources to help answer questions such as: what does "archaea" mean? Go the background information sources of this guide. Try a search in Access Science to bring up information about this concept.