Research Guide for Frameworks for Feminist Research (Dr Phipps)

Dr. Heidi LM Jacobs

Leddy Library


Things to think about for your Research Question Project

(Dr. P. Phipps, Frameworks for Feminist Research)


1.  Focus your question.   Remember how in class we took the example of women’s beauty and health and narrowed it?  Do similar things with your topic to help you in your searching

·       Women’s beauty and health

o   Women’s beauty

§  Young women, fashion trends, notions of beauty

·       College aged women and tattoos, ideas of beauty and identity

o   And again focus more? 


2.              Think about research as a way of finding answers to your questions

·       What questions do you need answered?

·       What questions do you want to explore?

o   For example:  How have ideas about tattoos and femininity changed? Why are young women getting tattoos? When are they getting them? (particular life moments?)

3.           You need to find:

·    Quantitative research

·    Qualitative research

·    Popular Media

·    Personal Narratives

4.           In addition to Google, the resources at Leddy Library will be very useful for all of the above categories.  In particular, check

·    For quantitative and qualitative research:

o   Women’s Studies Page under the “Journal Articles and Research Tools “ section.  Try databases like ProQuest Social Sciences or Academic Search complete

o   Psychology page under “Journal Articles and Research Tools “ section.  Try databases like PsychInfo

o   Communications, Media and Film page under “Journal Articles and Research Tools “ section.  Try databases like Communication and Mass Media Complete

o   Also look for scholarly books in the Leddy catalogue

·    For popular media and personal narratives

o   Google (of course!)

§  Here’s a good starting point on the web: Awesomely Feminist Websites, Blogs, and More

o   But, also go to things like the links to magazines and newspapers on the “Journal Articles and Research Tools “ page. 

o   Also books in the Leddy catalogue

5.           When using the databases, use these search hints: 

·   Trial and error: try a wide range of terms, words, combinations

·   Too many results: narrow focus

·   Too few: broaden

·   Use limits: select peer-review, full-text, exclude dissertations or books

·   Use the search options available

               6.         Ask for help if you’re stuck.  We’re here to help you. 

·   Email me at

·   Call me at x3856

·   Stop by the reference help desk at Leddy Library

·   Use the Chat with a Librarian service on our homepage