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Guide Tutorial for CMP101: Home

Tutorial on this guide - Home

Library Hours

Please read below recent changes made due to COVID-19

Online reference and research support is available for students 8 am to 8 pm Monday through Thursday, 8 am to 4 pm on Friday, and Saturday by appointment (email to book an appointment on Saturdays)

  • Text questions to (978) 999-3101
  • Chat with us by connecting here
  • Email a librarian using this form
  • Make an appointment to meet online with a librarian

Have questions?

Getting started with Research

Welcome students! This guide provides helpful links and resources to help you with your research. Please use the tabs to navigate through the pages of this guide.


  • Review Your Assignment 
    • What is the purpose? (persuasive, educational, analysis, opinion, compare & contrast)
    • Are there any requirements? (type and/or number of resources, citation style)
    • When is the paper due? (start early, to be sure you have resources in time)
  • Identify/Develop your topic
    • Use can use databases such as Opposing Viewpoints, newspaper, books, internet or even Wikipedia to come up with a topic that interests you. 
    • Use an online Reference Resources such as, Credo Referenc to gather background information on your topic.
    • As you are reading about your topic:
      •  jot down a list of key terms 
    • Use concept mapping (see video) or other brainstorming strategies to organize your ideas. 
    • List questions that you would like answered to help you focus your topic and guide your research.
    • Evaluate your questions
  •  Selecting Sources: 
    • Use the keywords that you jotted down while reading and begin searching for new information (journal articles, books, website, media etc..)  
    • Make sure the sources you are selecting:
      • Add new information to your existing body of evidence
      • Lead to other sources of information that might provide more details or better evidence 
      • Provide a new perspective or claim for your research
  • Cite your sources
    • ​Save/print the sources that you will be using for your paper for citation purposes. 


Opinion Essay

Reference Sources

Organizing Your Research

Calculate a time line to organize your research with this great resource from Tufts University.

Try one of the mapping tools on this page to help visualize and organize your topic.

    Watch this YouTube video on how to develop and use a concept map to organize your topic.

Print out this pdf document and fillout your answers for eash step, to help you organize your research



Access to many of the database links on this guide requires NSCC authentication - users must sign in with their My Northshore username & password

If you want to place any library materials on hold, request a book from another library, or check out any physical library materials out you will need to have your NSCC ID. 


What is my NSCC ID card number?

Your NSCC ID card number is the 14-digit number beginning with 21991 on the bottom of your NSCC student ID. This is used for checking materials out of the library, using reserve materials, requesting a book from another library, placing library materials on hold, and checking your library account online. 

What is my online catalog password?

Your default online catalog password is your birth date. Enter in format: MMDDYYYY.

How do I get a NSCC Student ID?

Stop by the Student Life Office in Danvers (DB 132) or Lynn (LW 171) with a current class schedule and a government issued photo ID to receive your NSCC ID. If you are a distance student, follow these online instructions.

How do I activate my NSCC ID for Library use?

Your ID is activated once your classes start. 

I am getting a barcode invalid login error.

Call the NSCC Libraries (Danvers: 978-739-5526, Lynn: 781-477-2133). You may need your password to be reset.

I am getting a cookies error message, what does that mean?

If you receive a Cookies Error Message when using the Library's research databases, you need to enable your browser to Accept All Cookies. 

Try a Google search on "enabling cookies" and "your browser name" for instructions.