Primary Sources For Research Papers

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Some secondary sources not only analyze primary sources, but also use them to argue a contention or persuade the reader to hold a certain opinion.

Examples of secondary sources include dictionaries, encyclopedias, textbooks, and books and articles that interpret, analyze, or review research works.

However, in the sciences or social sciences, primary sources report the results of an experiment.

David Mc Cullough’s biography, John Adams, could be a secondary source for a paper about John Adams but a primary source for a paper about how various historians have interpreted the life of John Adams.

Primary Sources Primary sources are the "materials on a topic upon which subsequent interpretations or studies are based, anything from firsthand documents such as poems, diaries, court records, and interviews to research results generated by experiments, surveys, ethnographies, and so on."* Primary sources are records of events as they are first described, usually by witnesses or people who were involved in the event.

Many primary sources were created at the time of the event but can also include memoirs, oral interviews, or accounts that were recorded later.

Many believe that the use of primary sources allows students insight into the minds and personal stories of those who actually experienced the events and the stories behind all key concepts in social studies.

The studies that are reviewed in the present paper provide evidence of the latter....

We have learned that throughout history, Great Britain had needs to expand its empire due to its limited resources and space within the country.

Its strategic location had allowed it to expand the way it had.


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