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BIOS 090 Fall 2023 How Can We Harness the Oceans to Solve Societal Needs?

Class exercise

Questions related to library resources for projects? Contact Brian Simboli   8-5003;


This exercise will be due Wednesday Sept. 6. Please post to CourseSite. 

In the exercise, you'll focus on finding resources for the three page essay, which is due October 11.

As you find sources, put your answers to the questions below into this Word document. 

Read over the essay assignment.

Select from the list of topics in the assignment and list the topic in the Word document.

Then record answers in document to the following.

1. Find  background information

Find three sources of information that give a broad overview of your topic or that help clarify concepts or terminology you encounter in your research. This is "background information". Note: just try to find items that point you to scholarly or popular articles and that help you understand your topic.

(a) Find a background information source on the web.

Open Advanced Google search.

Use it to find a website that satisfies the criteria for website reliability--called the "craap" test--in the page of this guide about evaluating sources. Indicate why you think the website is reliable. 

Do not use Wikipedia as one of the answers, though Wikipedia can be a stepping stone to finding other articles.

One option is to  use the advanced google search capability mentioned there, using the limit to “.gov” items.

Put the title and the URL of the webpage into the word document.

(b) Find an encyclopedia article 

Go to the Finding Sources of this guide, then see the box about "Background Information Sources" and find the encyclopedia tab.

Put the title of the encyclopedia article and its URL into your Word document. (Note--you won't be using encyclopedia articles as as a source in your paper; just use it to get background information.)

(c) Find one ebook

Go to ASA, the search engine near the top of the library homepage.  To limit to ebooks, see the filter on the right of the search results. There's a tutorial on this guide about searching for books. See it at "Background Information Sources: Books and Ebooks" (scroll down there).

Put the book title into the word document.

2. Find one popular article 

Review the page “Scholarly versus Popular Articles”.

Then go to the Finding Articles page and search the resources in the box devoted to newspaper and magazine article databases. Newspapers and magazine articles are examples of "popular articles".

Some of the databases also allow you to find scholarly articles, so follow the details in those cases about how to limit your results to popular (not scholarly) articles.

You can also find a popular article by searching Advanced Google; at the top of the page of search results click on news.

3. Find two scholarly articles

Go to the Finding Sources page, scroll down to the Article Databases box, and select the "Scholarly" tab. Some of the databases have popular articles, so make sure to follow the instructions for finding scholarly articles.

Find a scholarly article in the search results. Read over the abstract. TIP: the search results from some databases have a link to articles published later in time that cite the article in the search results. Links like like this can you to an additional article relevant to your topic or perhaps an even more relevant article for your paper.

See if you can get to the full text of the article. Either the database itself will link to the full text, or you can get to it from "Lehigh Links"  or you will would have to order it via "ILLiad" from Lehigh Links. Please indicate what you find. (No need to order the article via ILLiad at this point! You can do that later, as you start writing.) For a refresher about "Lehigh Links", go to the "Finding Sources" page of this guide, then see the box labeled "Accessing Full Text".

4. Find one Review Article

Recall that "review articles" are a special type of scholarly article that provides a high-level overview of recent developments in a field.

Do not confuse them with book reviews, i.e., when someone writes an article that critiques a book

Also, don't confuse review articles with "peer review". Separate concepts! "Review articles" are a type of scholarly article. Peer review is the process by which experts evaluate an article someone wants to publish in a scholarly journal.

A good review article can be a great starting place for your initial research, after you have reviewed background information and before you go on to read scholarly articles that are not review articles.

Search for a review article in one of the three ways below.  Tip: sort the results with most recent first.  If you can't find one quickly, find one that is at least somewhat related. After you find one, record the name of the database in which you found the article plus the article title

Option 1 for finding review articles.

Try Web of Science to find one. For an overview of searching this database, go the menu of this tutorial and find the module about searching this database.   

In the search results, look on the left to filter for review articles. See below:


Option 2 for finding review articles. Search the Annual Reviews database to find a review article about your topic. Make sure you sort the results by most recently published.

Option 3 for finding review articles.

Do a search in Google Search. For an overview of searching this database, go to the menu of this tutorial and find the module about searching this database.   For an overview of searching this database, see here. In the search results, look for "review" on the lower left. Make that the items that come up when you click review are review journal articles, not book reviews or something else. Here is a tutorial about using Google Scholar.

5. Cite one of the scholarly articles in APA style.


(i)  Watch the video tutorial here:

(ii) Use ZoteroBib to put your articles into APA style. See the page of this guide "Citing Your Work" for how to use ZoteroBib.

(iii) Tools like ZoteroBib will not always render a reference accurately. Check the reference you found by using ZoteroBib against the examples for citing here. That is, see if ZoteroBib left out anything or had an inaccuracy. You can make edits within ZoteroBib.

[NOTE: at the bottom of this page are further notes about APA style to review when you write your paper.]

6. Set up an ILLiad account

While you won’t use it for this exercise, spend two minutes setting up an ILLiad account. Go to ILLiad enables you to order articles or books that Lehigh does not have. Click on ILLiad. Fill out required one-time registration information. *You don’t need to order articles for the exercise, but you may find ILLiad useful later in the course.* Wait until you are sure you need an article before using ILLiad.

Palci on the webpage on the same webpage is another service normally used to find print books that Lehigh does not have; it can be useful throughout your career at Lehigh.

7. Doing presentations and finding images/visuals

Review the material under "presentations and visuals" of this guide. The essay requires two visuals. Look for them as you get further along on your paper.



We focused in the exercise on formatting a journal article reference in APA. Go here to see how to cite formats other than journal articles, such as books.


When you write your paper, keep in mind the distinction between "in-text" citations references collected at the end of the paper.

To learn more about using ZoteroBib for in-text citations, see the video tutorial about ZoteroBib in this guide.

For examples of in-text citations, see here.  


Here is another resource for information about APA:   Purdue OWL.