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When you're first starting your research, it's a good idea to start by thinking about your topic and your research questions. Watch the video below (1:22) for more information on topics and research questions.
When you're just getting started with a topic, it can be helpful to do some general searching to learn more about it. Discovery Search, available through the library's home page, is a tool that provides access to all of VT Libraries' books and ebooks, as well as about 80% of everything else we own: streaming videos, newspaper articles, journal articles, and more. To perform a basic search, enter your search terms in the main search box on the library's homepage (circled below). You can start with just a few words or phrases related to your topic and see what kind of information comes up. Remember that this will include information from all disciplines, so you may find some information completely unrelated to your topic.
The video below will give you more details about performing a basic, exploratory search.