Test Your Knowledge

This quiz is meant to help you assess your confidence in, and knowledge of, specific strategies involved in conducting research projects. Based on your responses, you will be provided with recommendations to work with Library Compass.


1. I feel knowledgeable about how to approach a research assignment in a humanities subject area.
a) Yes b) No

2. I am familiar with critical methods of analyzing language and evidence to focus and shape research questions within the humanities.
a) Yes b) No

3. I usually use library resources at the initial stages of my research to focus and shape the overall research project.
a) Yes b) No


1. I feel comfortable planning research strategies using my knowledge of the subject discipline (i.e.: formulating keyword searches, using bibliographic references and footnotes, etc.).
a) Yes b) No

2. I know which major databases and catalogs to search in for meaningful materials in my subject area.
a) Yes b) No

3. I know when and how to consult the following sources of information for my research: general and subject-specific reference materials, bibliographies, and journals.
a) Yes b) No

4. I know how to search effectively for information in CLIO using Library of Congress subject headings.
a) Yes b) No


1. I know the main criteria used to assess the validity of sources within my discipline.
a) Yes b) No

2. I feel confident evaluating the accuracy and objectivity of web resources.
a) Yes b) No

3. I know how to use specific assessment strategies based on the content and purpose of my research questions to evaluate sources of information.
a) Yes b) No


1. I know how to work with other people's ideas in developing my own arguments.
a) Yes b) No

2. I use various strategies to collect notes and document ideas at the early stages of my research in order to avoid the risk of plagiarism.
a) Yes b) No

3. I am knowledgeable about how and when to use different citation styles in my work.
a) Yes b) No


Library Compass is organized into four Compass Points, each of which provides guidelines and instruction in a component of library research. You can navigate between Compass Points from the green navigation bar at the top of every page. Feel free to enter Library Compass at any point and navigate within it, following your specific interests and needs.

How does the Compass work?
The Compass Points cover:

  • Planning your research essay: offers principles and guidelines for framing research questions and for structuring essays.
  • Finding resources: offers strategies for searching, locating, and accessing specific resources in your subject area.
  • Evaluating resources: explains criteria for judging the quality and credibility of resources.
  • Documenting your research: presents guidelines for citing resources and explains the principles of intellectual property and the legal and ethical issues involved in infringing copyright.

These Compass Points intersect throughout the research process. Library Compass helps you recognize the relationships among the different aspects of the process in order to improve and refine your research strategies and skills.


The examples included in this guide are based on a subject area within the Humanities. They are meant simply to provide a framework for the research process. The general research principles and strategies introduced in the Compass Points are transferable to other subject areas as well. Before you begin exploring the Library Compass you may want to Test Your Knowledge by taking the quiz on this page. It will help direct you to the Compass Point most suited to your needs.

We hope you will find the Library Compass useful in learning how to do research using library resources. Please contact us, the Library Compass team, if you have any questions or comments. We welcome your feedback.

continue to... Planning Your Research Essay