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Foundations of Education in CECH

Use this course guide for quick links to resources and tools referenced in library instruction classes.

CECH Library Head

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Katie Foran-Mulcahy
CECH Library
300 Teachers-Dyer Complex
2610 University Circle
Cincinnati, OH 45221
Subjects: Education

Introduction to primary sources

What makes a source "primary"?

Primary sources are the evidence of history, original records or objects created by participants or observers at the time historical events occurred or even well after events, as in memoirs and oral histories. Primary sources may include but are not limited to: letters, manuscripts, diaries, journals, newspapers, maps, speeches, interviews, documents produced by government agencies, photographs, audio or video recordings, born-digital items (e.g. emails), research data, and objects or artifacts (such as works of art or ancient roads, buildings, tools, and weapons). These sources serve as the raw materials historians use to interpret and analyze the past.

Resources for topic selection, background info, and primary sources

When choosing a topic for the photo essay assignment, your course texts and readings and even Google can provide initial inspiration. Consider your own interests, too, when making those initial search inquiries. 

See below for list of e-books from UC Libraries that generally discuss the history of American education. Within them, you may discover your topic -- a unique moment, event, law, court action, legislation, etc. in history impacting education.

Considered secondary or tertiary sources, reference tools like those listed below can provide can provide background and context around a topic you're exploring. They can also point the way for more specific research -- and pave the way for selecting high-quality primary sources.

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Phone: 513-556-1424

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