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BI 454W Plant Ecology: Home

Primary Sources in the Natural Sciences

This video will highlight the differences between primary sources, secondary sources, and review articles in the Natural Sciences. (Time 4:34)

Open Captioned version

Reading reasearch

Search Terms

Even if you have decided on a topic to write about, finding information about it can be tough! This is at least in part due to the fact that there can be many different terms used to describe an idea. The tutorial below gives some useful pointers on how to find search terms that will work for you.

Generating Search Terms
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Citing your sources

  • Use the style specified for submissions by Plant Ecology.
    • Always use the standard abbreviation of a journal’s name; see LTWA for apprpriate abbreviations. 
      If you are unsure, use the full journal title.
    • This style is a modified version of the CSE 7th (name-year) and Harvard styles. If you are unsure, start with one of those styles and modify it appropriately.
  • The instructions for authors page is where you will find this for most journals. 
    • Look for a section labeled "References" or "Citation Style."

Featured Databases

Use the following to locate schoalrly articles on your topic. Each has strenghts and weaknesses and searching is a little different in each one. Biological Sciences is likely the strongest in plant ecology, though you may be surprised by what Google Scholar can offer.

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