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Exercise Science: Research Tips

The research guide for the exercise science students.

Effective Research Strategies

Selecting a Topic

·         Browse your text book, great place to start since it is the first source that you have available.

·         Browse articles relating to sport & exercise science in the popular press, such as Sports Illustrated and USA Today 

·         Listen to the news for reports on sports injuries or fitness

·         Browse exercise sites such as The President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports,

 ·         Browse exercise related books such as World of Sports Science

·         Go over your class notes, since your professor and classmates will mention topics during class discussions that you would like to be more educated about.

 ·         Most important, select a topic that is interesting and will keep you motivated to do the research.

 Defining a Topic

·         Initially, your topic will be TOO BROAD. An example is sports injuries   (ask yourself, what about a topic that you would like to focus on).

·         Once you have decided on a topic, do some background reading and this will help you to focus on a specific aspect of the topic.

·         As you read more and more about your topic, you will be able to focus on a specific area of interest, thus narrowing your topic.  

 ·         You may need to modify your topic several times to get it just right.

  Narrowing a Topic

·         Focus on an specific injury: elbow injuries 

 ·         Focus on a specific population: baseball pitchers

 Documentation and Citation of Sources

  It is very IMPORTANT to keep correct documentation of the sources used during the research process for the following reasons:

  • If the ideas and thoughts are not original yours, you must give credit to the owners of the works, otherwise this will result in plagiarism.
  • Using the works of others without giving credit to the owners is also a violation of the copyright law.
  • Proper citations enable your instructor and others to check the cited sources.