Public Speaking Research Guide - LSC-North Harris

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Starting Point

1. Think about your topic and what are you trying to answer.

  • Current Issues or Informative Speech: Think of topics that will interest you and your audience.  In your research, gather the facts about your topic (who, what, when, where, how). 

  • Persuasive Speech:  Select a topic that is important to you.  Be sure that you hold a position regarding the topic.  In your research, gather the facts about your topic (who, what, when, where, how).

2. Identify the keywords that best represent your idea, think of 

 Topic  Synonyms/Related Terms  Narrow Terms 
 plastic surgery  cosmetic surgery  laser eye surgery, Lasik
 censorship  first amendment   music lyrics, video games, Internet 

Research Databases

Use your 14-digit library barcode number for off-campus access (the number is on the back of your student ID).  Don't have an ID? Get one from the library. Distance students can fill out the online request form.

General Academic Resources

Informative Speech on a Person or a Historical Figure

Persuasive Speech on Social or Political Topics

Cultural Speech 

Health or Medical Topics


Library Catalog

Find books, e-books, DVDs, and more.

Use the Library Catalog

  • Enter search terms.
  • Browse search results and click on the title to view the detailed item record.
  • Scroll to the bottom for availability, collection, location, and call number.
  • To find the book on the shelf you will need the complete call number.
  • To request a book from another location, click "request first available copy" then type in your library barcode number and your PIN.

Library Catalog Video Tutorials


Citation Help

  1. Keep track of all of the information and sources you used during your research.
  2. Ask your professor about the required citation style.
  3. Consult Citation Help Guide from LSC-North Harris Library to help you construct your citations.

Each citation should answer the questions:

  • Who wrote the material you are using?
  • What did the author(s) entitle the piece he/she/they wrote?
  • Where and when was it published (for a book, what city; for an article, which periodical)?
  • If it's an article or a chapter, what pages is your source on?



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