Research Sources

Truth and accuracy are an essential foundation to every lecture or student reflection. The manner we develop an accurate understanding of a subject is through research. Recognizing and relying on reliable sources is a learned skill. Students should always seek primary sources when possible. Secondary sources are acceptable as well, but a student should always examine the origin and nature of the source.

Relying on accurate and sourced information is essential in academic endeavors. Students should view with caution anonymous, unverified, and/or unattributable websites, such as blogs, commercial websites (especially travel), and Wikipedia.

Here is a an explanation and list of Primary and Secondary Sources from the Healey Library at UMass Boston:

Primary Sources are immediate, first-hand accounts of a topic, from people who had a direct connection with it. Primary sources can include:
Texts of laws and other original documents.
Newspaper reports, by reporters who witnessed an event or who quote people who did.
Speeches, diaries, letters and interviews – what the people involved said or wrote.
Original research.
Datasets, survey data, such as census or economic statistics.
Photographs, video, or audio that capture an event.

Secondary Sources are one step removed from primary sources, though they often quote or otherwise use primary sources. They can cover the same topic, but add a layer of interpretation and analysis. Secondary sources can include:Most books about a topic.
Analysis or interpretation of data.
Scholarly or other articles about a topic, especially by people not directly involved.
Documentaries (though they often include photos or video portions that can be considered primary sources).

Below are a list of sources compiled by JW Bailly.





The following are other sites that have free to use images.

British Library
Creative Commons
Florida International University Digital Collections Center
Florida Memory: State Library and Archives of Florida
Library of Congress
Paris Musées
Public Domain Review
Raw Pixel Public Domain
Smithsonian Open Access
University of Florida Digital Collections
Wikimedia Commons

John William Bailly  20 January 2023

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