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Get the Big Picture
Step 2: Get the Big Picture
The big picture a general understanding of your topic. How do you get this?
- Read about your topic - using textbooks, general books, information from professional associations, whatever.
- From your reading, find the main ideas of your topic and terms/keywords scholars use to describe them...you may find them in the text, the citations, or the reference list.
Remember, not all of this reading is scholarly - but it should all have some references or citations to start going deeper. And you'll use the main ideas in the next steps:
- Going Deeper: learn what those terms mean to better understand them. (Example: "Retrieval Process" is about memory and learning)
- Joining the Conversation: you'll use those terms (that you now understand) to search for more articles.
See below right for an example.
Fun Big-Picture Info!
Did you know you can find Big Picture information from lots of places?
In-depth magazine articles, websites, and podcasts are in everyday language can help you understand complex concepts. Just check to make sure they mention specific studies or authors or articles that you can look up on your own.
Take a look at these:
Get the Big Picture: Example