Brooklands College
Subject Guide
Citation Guide

Getting Started

Think first!

What are you being asked to do?
Read the assignment title carefully and check that you understand it! If you’re not sure what you are supposed to do, check with your tutor.
Think about any guidelines you have been given, e.g. when it has to be handed in and what you have to do to get a good grade.

Start planning your search…

What are you looking for?

Look at your assignment title and decide on the most important words. These are your keywords. Look for:
• topic words – that describe the subject of the assignment, e.g. alcohol, customers
• instructional words – that tell you what to do, e.g. compare, analyse.
Then do a brainstorm or a visual spider diagram to help you decide how you will use these words in your search. You may find it helpful to use mindmapping software, such as to organise your thoughts.
How to choose your Keywords This sheet will help you think of keywords to use in your search. 
Assignment Words This is a glossary of words which often appear in assignment questions.

Where are you going to look for information?

The Library has produced a number of Subject Guides which suggest books, periodicals, databases and websites useful for a particular subject.