We all dread seeing those two words on a class syllabus: Research Paper. For me, the most overwhelming part of writing papers is getting started…which means I avoid starting, which means I end up scrambling to finish the thing a few days before it’s due. I’ve slowly come to realize that this is a terrible way to go about writing a research paper…It’s really important to start early!
A great first step to get started writing a research paper is to find and order the resources you’re going to use. One amazing perk of going to USG is that you have access to all books in the University of Maryland library system, which is really extensive. Best of all is that you can have those books sent to USG’s Priddy Library for you to pick up instead of having to drive to another campus to check out books.
Typically, the books only take two or three days to come, which is perfect if you’re on tight schedule (aka you procrastinated). And if there’s a book or article you need that isn’t available in the UMD system, Priddy Library has instructions on their website for how to order something through Interlibrary Loan.
Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to order books from the Maryland universities library system (learned through my own trial and error):
- Go to the homepage of USG’s Priddy Library.
- On the giant search bar at the top of the screen, select the “WorldCat” tab. Unfortunately, this doesn’t show you a picture of every cat in the world, but it will send you to the University of Maryland library system page once you enter a search term and press enter.
- Scan through the options that come up to find the different materials available to you. (You may have to search the books on other sites to find summaries and reviews.)
- If you find a book or document you’d like to order, click the “Place Hold” button, which will take you to a page where you can select what school you attend.
- After you log in with your school’s account, you will get a screen where you are asked to select a pick up location. Select “Shady Grove Library” and your book will be shipped directly to Priddy Library for you to pick up.
- Once you get an email letting you know your book has arrived, go to the resource desk at the front of Priddy Library and tell them you have a book to pick up. You’ll need your USG ID. When you’re finished with your books, you can return them to Priddy Library, who will send them back.
If you ever need help finding sources for a paper, overcoming research shock, or navigating ordering books, Priddy Library has an incredibly helpful library staff. You can even talk to them via online chat or text message.
Best of luck researching!