Skip to main content

Module 1: Beginning Your Research

Refining a Topic

Once you've selected a topic, it's important to ask yourself the following questions:

Is my topic too broad? 

Too Broad Manageable
Domestic Abuse
  • Prevention programs for domestic abusers
  • Psychological ramifications of domestic abuse on children

 

Is my topic too narrow?

Too Narrow Manageable
SnapChat use and its effects on anorexic teenage girls
  • Influence of social media on body image among adolescent girls

 

NOTE: Manageable research topics are assignment dependent. Consider the length and depth of your research paper. A topic that is too narrow for a first year student may be acceptable for a graduate student. 

Brainstorm Ideas

Brainstorm ideas and related topics. Ask yourself WhoWhatWhenWhere, and Why?

These questions can help you narrow a topic that is too broad as well as broaden a topic that is too narrow.

The Mind Map brainstorming tool in Credo Reference can help you explore your topic, find related terms, expand or narrow your topic.

Credo mind map search for social media and twitter

Healey Library | University of Massachusetts Boston | 100 Morrissey Blvd | Boston, MA | 02125-3393 | 617-287-5900