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Sound Shaping History: Finding Information

Assignment Description

Each student will choose a different audio recording or development in audio technology that influenced a society or contributed to social change. Students will explore both the history, technology and context of the event, and analyze its influence. This paper requires that you do original research on the topic of your choice, and includes a bibliography that must cite at least three academic or primary sources. 

If you're struggling to find information, use the Need Help tab!

Recommended Databases for Finding Articles

Background Resources for American History

Information Evaluation

You've found a relevant piece of information! Is it right for your paper? Ask yourself these 3 questions:

  1. What? What am I looking at?
    • Is this a journal article, newspaper article, book, magazine article, etc?
    • Is it a primary or secondary source?
    • Is it an scholarly (academic) or popular source?
  2. So What? Why is this a good piece of information?
    • Is the author an expert?
    • Is the information current, accurate, credible?
    • Is it biased? What was the motivation or purpose of the person/organization that produced this information.
  3. Now What? How are you going to use this in your paper?
    • Does it fit into the BEAM method?
    • Does it answer one of your research questions?
    • Does it help you make your argument or add to your narrative?

What type of information are you looking for?

BEAM method of research

  • Background: using a source to provide general information to explain the topic.
  • Exhibit: using a source as evidence or examples to analyze.
  • Argument: using a source to engage its argument.
  • Method: using a source’s way of analyzing an issue to apply to your own issue.

For more information about how to use BEAM, check out HCL's resource.