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Art 60-713 MFA Thesis Writing I: This Guide/ Research Best Practices

This Guide

Resources online and in print for Art MFA Writing Seminar I, Spring 2020 including, reference works, primary and secondary resources, anthologies, booklists, how to browse the stacks and search for materials in the library, journal article databases, dissertations, images and media and database search tips.

Research Best Practices



Concept map by Lowry Burgess


The Research Process

  • Develop life-long practice of inquiry
    • internal, empathetic, emotive and current intellectual knowledge
    • curiosity without judgement = open doors to play
  • Practice diverse approaches to finding information
  • Seek balance of inquiry through human and electronic resources
  • Understand the ethics of using and sharing information
  • Proficiency in evaluating information     
    • recognize levels of reliability for various resources
    • peer reviewed, scholarly, popular resources
    • primary and secondary resources
    • web evaluation requires special attention to knowledge of source/authors, accuracy (validity), objectivity, currency, and s

Familiarity with the "Physical" Library

  • System of library organization at Carnegie Mellon Libraries
    • Library of Congress (LC)
    • How to browse
  • Ask! consult librarians, library staff and library services
  • Basic library resources (print and electronic) and how to search them
  • How and where to access library resources, print and electronic
  • Primary sources including special collections and archives
  • Where to find resources CMU Libraries do not have (other libraries)





Robert Smithson. Spiral Jetty. JSTOR

Mo Dawley
Art and Drama Librarian
Hunt Library
Art Library and Special Collections

If CMU Libraries don't have what you need:
Ask the Art and Drama Librarian
Interlibrary Loan