Before examining the suggestions and resources in this guide, clarify exactly what information you need, and also what you need to do with that information. Ask yourself (or your instructor):
Each project involves different methods of data collection, and the resources included here will help with each.
Finding statistics in library resources can happen in a few ways:
Some specialized databases--mostly in the "hard" sciences and the social sciences--include fields for locating the results of statistical research in their Advanced Search options. To do this:
For example, if you want to know what percentage of addicted gamblers relapse within one year of treatment, your keywords might be relapse AND (gambling OR gambler OR gamble) AND addiction, and your selected methodologies might include empirical study, qualitative study, or interview. You would read the results of those studies or interviews to find the statistic you seek.
Alternately, in databases with or without these Advanced Search features, you may choose to add to your keyword combinations to find the information you need. For example, in the search box, you might type:
relapse AND (gambling OR gambler OR gamble) AND addiction AND (percentage OR statistics OR data OR rates)
The library's guide to "Searching for Information Sources" from our Research Skills Tutorial will help you to identify keywords using concept charts, and effectively combine keywords using Boolean operators, as above.
As mentioned above, carrying out a statistical research project involves several steps:
The following resources will help with understanding this process.
Be sure to also review the tabbed pages above for more helpful resources.
For subject-specific statistics resources, please visit the relevant library Subject Guides.