HIST 300 - Introduction to Historical Thinking

Class library research guide for Introduction to Historical Thinking.

Library Research Guide


Antique Banner

Welcome to the HISTORY 300 research guide. This guide will:

  • help researchers distinguish between primary and secondary sources
  • help researchers develop search words relevant to their historical time periods in order to more effectively locate primary sources
  • develop effective searches to locate relevant books, articles, maps, videos, and other secondary sources in databases and other search engines
  • help researchers refine and focus their searches

Go directly to the K-State Libraries home page

Capstone Papers

Wonder what you're working towards? Take a look at some papers written by seniors in History.

These papers all demonstrate an ability to:

  • select a good topic (new perspective, manageable)
  • use of a mix of primary and secondary sources
  • clear writing that states a thesis and supports that thesis with
    • a) evidence from primary sources
    • b) ideas and perspectives from secondary sources, and
    • c) original concepts.

Also, the authors of these papers do a good job of citing or referencing their sources within the text so it is obvious what is evidence, or someone else's ideas, and what is original to the author.

This guide will hopefully guide you to the same results with your own research papers by giving you tips and suggestions on how to conduct historical research using the full suite of K-State Libraries' resources.  If at any point something is not clear to you or you would like extra assistance, don't be afraid to ask!

Cite Your Sources

Chicago Manual of Style

Learn more about Chicago Style from The Chicago manual of style

Some database have  "Cite," or "Cite This" link for articles.



Zotero is a free tool that you can use to store citations and create bibliographies.

Learn more on the Zotero page of the Citations & Bibliography guide.

Research Consultations with Sara K. Kearns & Dan Ireton

A librarian can meet with you at any point in your research process and help you:

  • create a research plan
  • determine if there are primary or secondary sources that you can access for your topic
  • identify other archives or organizations that you can contact 
  • improve your literature review
  • learn to critically evaluate your sources
  • request materials from other libraries

Schedule appointments with Sara K. Kearns or Dan Ireton. We can meet in person or via Zoom.

Quick Tips

Keep these tips in mind: 

  • Most databases will let you select (or remove) kinds of articles like book reviews, refereed articles, and conference proceedings. Look for "Advanced Search," "Publication Type" or "Limits."

  • The database America: History and Life has a link in the upper left corner of the screen to CLIO Notes. CLIO Notes are like a history encyclopedia. Stumped for a topic or keywords? Check out CLIO Notes.

  • The database WorldCat shows you what books, films, etc are owned by libraries around the wor.d. Want to see what resources on your topic exist that K-State doesn't own? Check out WorldCat and then request materials through Interlibrary Loan.  If another library will loan it, we'll try to get it for you. (Except textbooks, we don't borrow textbooks.)