Career Research


Scholarly Sources

It can be tricky to find scholarly sources that are useful for a research assignment about your future career. Most scholarly, peer-reviewed articles are conducting original research in their field, not writing about career paths. 

One way to incorporate scholarly sources into a career paper is to find recent scholarly articles in your field.  These articles can serve as examples of the type of research you might conduct in that career, of changes / challenges facing the profession, and more.  

To find recent scholarly articles in your field, follow these steps:

  1. First, brainstorm a topic in your field that interests you. For example, if you want to work as a marine biologist, you may be interested in coral reef conservation.
  2. Enter that search into Randall Library's homepage search.
    1. On the inital results page, click on "See all results" under the initial Scholarly Article Results. 
    2. Once you have opened all the Scholarly Article results, use the filters on the left to narrow your results down by Date and by Discpline.
    3. Need help? Check out this video about advanced searching in the library homepage search.
  3. Didn't see any promising articles in the homepage search? Try another database recommended for your discipline



Occupational Outlook Handbook

Resource from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics displaying the projected outlook of occupations in a variety of industries. Searchable by median pay, entry-level education, on-the-job training, number of new jobs, and projected growth rate.

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Search this site or browse from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics to find detailed information about your career. We also recommend looking at the further resources for each career to see the webpages for your career's professional organizations--you can find more information on those in the section below.

A comprehensive collection of Industry Market Research. IBISWorld is a powerful business tool to learn about existing clients or potential clients’ core industries of involvement & how changes to those industries can have an impact on you or your organization.

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Search for your the industry in which you plan to work to find an in-depth industry report. This is a Randall Library database, so you will have to log in with your UNCW username and password to access it.
Vocations and Careers (Gale OneFile)

Gale OneFile: Vocations and Careers aids users in researching a vocation, finding an appropriate institution of learning, job searching, and maintaining a career. Vocations and Careers offers hundreds of current and applicable periodicals ranging from general career guides to highly specialized industry journals.

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Find Professional Associations

Professional associations can be a great source for information about your future career. For most fields, you can find international, regional, state, and even local chapters of working professionals. 

Your UNCW department may have recommended professional associations already listed on their department website.You can also ask your instructors what professiona associations they belong to.

A simple Google search for your field and the word association will often yield useful results. For example: sociology association.  Because many such professional associations are non-profits, you might also want to limit you search to .org sites. This may result is more useful results. For example: sociology association  (Learn more about searching within domains in Google). 

The Occupational Outlook Handbook, listed above, also often has professional organizations linked on the "More Info" tab for each occupation.

As always when searching the web, be wary and on guard for disreputable sites or small groups masquerading as large, professional associations. Throughly explore the Association's website and also look at what other websites have to say about the Association. Use that information to determine the validity of the Association. When in doubt, ask a librarian or your instructor for assistance.

Contact Your Librarian

Stephanie Crowe

Portrait of Stephanie Crowe
Associate Director, Academic & Research Engagement
Phone Number: 
RL 2056

Twitter: @shcrowe

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