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Background Information

Locate Background Information to get a general overview of a topic

Background Information

Background information can help you prepare for further research by explaining all the issues related to your topic, especially when you're investigating a topic that's unfamiliar to you. 

Refine your topic by :

  • Check for background information in dictionaries, handbooks and encyclopedias.

  • Collect keywords or important terms, and concepts when searching databases 

  • Highlight important facts related to your topic, such as: terminology, dates, events, history, names, and organizations.

  • Use the University of Akron Databases that contain current events that specialize in coverage of "hot topics" and "current events". They will provide background information on a a variety of topics.

  • Start thinking in broad terms, then narrow down your topic. Look at bibliographies to guide you to other sources of information (books, articles, etc.). They will provide an introduction and short overview.