COMM 2373 - Introduction to Debate

This guide is designed to assist users in finding materials to assist in debate research at the University of Arkansas

Communication Librarian

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Molly Boyd
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MULN 417
(479) 575-2962

Welcome Debate Students

Welcome. On these pages, you'll find resources to assist with your debate research. The Libraries own a number of books and journals to assist you in the process. This guide is also designed to assist you with locating newspaper articles, government information, and statistics to help you build your case.

Beginning Your Research

Your research begins with understanding your debate resolution and performing an environmental scan to determine current policy.  For example, this year's college debate topic is:

Resolved: the United States Federal Government should substantially reduce restrictions on and/or substantially increase financial incentives for energy production in the United States of one or more of the following: coal, crude oil, natural gas, nuclear power, solar power, wind power.

Your environmental scan would answer the following questions.  What are the current restrictions and incentives are available for energy production?  What are the effects of the current policies? Do energy policies appear to effect the methods of energy production?  What are the current rates of energy production ?

Use government websites, CQ Researcher and books to get background on your topic.


Sometimes the terms you are given may prove difficult to use in a database search.  If you are having difficulties, look for synonyms and other terms found in your initial research to expand your result sets. See this video on Keyword searching for more tips and tricks

Search the Library Catalog

Google Uncle Sam

To search for federal government sites in Google, add [] your search.

For example:

Energy incentives