Essay Requirements

Judges will examine your use of library resources and what you have learned through the research process. All materials submitted with your application will be reviewed with this in mind but the 600-800 word essay you write will be the key document for providing judges information in these areas.

Address the five points below in your essay. Not all questions will apply to every applicant. If one or more questions are not applicable, please explain why.

  1. What types of information resources did you use at the Leatherby Libraries, online, or through other libraries and archives? Include a discussion of books, journal articles, databases (e.g., ERIC, PsycINFO, Academic Search Premier, etc.), archival material, websites, audiovisual materials, or other materials. If this doesn’t apply to your research process, explain why.
  2. What research processes and search techniques did you use to find the materials for your project? How did the keywords and limiters you used affect the results you retrieved? If this doesn’t apply to your research process, explain why.
  3. How did you critically evaluate the information sources you located? Specifically, how did you apply the criteria of timeliness, relevance, authority, accuracy and purpose (TRAAP)? Details about the TRAAP criteria can be found on the library’s website. If this doesn’t apply to your research process, explain why.
  4. How did assistance from a librarian, library staff member, or a library service (for example, library instruction session, one-on-one meeting with a librarian, visit to Special Collections and Archives, or interlibrary loan) affect your research process? If this doesn’t apply to your research process, explain why.
  5. What have you learned about the research process from conducting research for this paper/project? How will you use what you have learned in the future? How would your research be valuable to other scholars? If this doesn’t apply to your research process, explain why.

Selection Criteria

The 600-800 word essay students submit with their applications will be the primary document the judges will evaluate to determine prize winners. All application materials, however, will be carefully considered along with the essay. Your essay will be judged based on the Evaluation Rubric.