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Although not recommended for citing in college level work, Wikipedia is a great place to get an overview of your research topic and the note important names and terms to use when searching more scholarly sources. Like doing an initial Google Search, reading an article on Wikipedia about your topic can help you get a broad overview of the important names, terms, and ideas. This will help you do a more efficient search in the databases because you'll have a better idea of what you are looking for and what is most relevant.
For more information on using Wikipedia, as well as other resources that you can use as a source to write your paper, take a look at our Background Research page on our College Writing guide.