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CO 121 Writing Processes: Home

This guide lists resources that will help you find information for your assignments.

Tools for Organizing Your Ideas

Here are a few tools to consider for organizing your ideas and research:

1) Post-it Notes

Post-it notes are great for brainstorming ideas and reconfiguring them to work out a logical flow for your argument, research, or paper.


postit note planning


2) Mindmaps or flowcharts

Mind maps are also great visual tools for brainstorming your topic.  Use basic structuring principles for your process analysis to define areas of the map, and fill in the details with information from your research.


Start Searching for Articles, Books, DVD's and More!

Limit Your Results


Keywords for Searching

Identify words in your research question. Think about the requirements of your assignment. Make a list.

If your essay is on the issue of food deserts in American cities and what can be done to bring more fresh food options to citizens, you could choose the following keywords. It's helpful to put phrases in quotation marks.

  • "Food deserts"
  • Cities and other synonyms for city such as urban
  • United States
  • grocery stores and other synonyms such as markets

Now write a search statement linking the words that you can use in OneSearch.

"food deserts" AND cities 

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Lisa Johnston
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Director of Library Services
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