Primary sources are records that provide first-hand accounts or evidence of an event, action, topic, or time period. Primary sources are usually created by individuals that directly experience an event or topic.
Examples of primary sources include:
Primary sources can give direct evidence, specific details, and can provide a window into the feelings, reactions, and perceptions of a time. Primary sources might be used as an example or evidence in your paper. The downside of primary sources is that they may include bias, give a limited perspective, or lack context (HACC Library: https://libguides.hacc.edu/primarysources).
Secondary Sources are accounts written after the fact with the benefit of hindsight. They are interpretations and evaluations of primary sources. Secondary sources are not evidence, but rather commentary on and discussion of evidence (Yale University Library, "Primary, secondary & tertiary sources" http://guides.library.yale.edu/content.php?pid=129904&sid=1196376).
Most of your research assignments will require you to use secondary sources.
Examples of secondary sources include:
Secondary sources that are suitable for use in academic research can be found through the library's research databases and book catalog. Check out Search the Library Catalog, What are Library Databases, and Search the Library Databases for helpful tips on using those resources:
Please CONTACT US if you have questions.