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Sociology Research: Scholarly Articles

Finding information for research papers in LSC-O Sociology courses

Keyword Searches

Keywords are significant words that you use as search terms in online catalogs and databases. Good keywords will give you more useful search results, and the more specific your search results are to your topic, the faster and more efficient your research will become.

Keywords should be related to the major concepts in your topic. For example: 
                    Topic Statement: The effect of rising gas prices on the economy of the United States.

                    Keywords: gas prices, economy, United States

Multiple keyword searches are often necessary to generate the most effective results. Start with the broad concepts related to your topic, and then add or try more specific keywords.

Synonyms are words that have the same meaning as your keywords. Searching the synonyms of your keywords can sometimes bring back different results. Write down as many synonyms or alternate spellings for your topic as you can, and remember to include them in your searches. 


                    Gas, gasoline, fuel, fossil fuels,

                    United States, America, USA

                    Prices, cost, expense

                    economy, finances, economic, fiscal, inflation

Tips to remember:

  • Keywords should represent the most important concepts in your topic.
  • Sometimes you must learn new vocabulary related to your topic.
  • Try multiple variants or synonyms of your keywords.
  • If you find a worthy source for your topic, look for additional keywords in the title, abstract, and subject headings.


Library Resources

The databases below contain scholarly articles on a variety of topics in sociology. Follow the links to search each database for articles on your topic. If you need help searching, please reach out to a librarian for assistance.

Visit the Library's Help Guide on Sociology Research for more help with your paper.