Awesome Explanation on The Difference Between Primary and Secondary Sources for Students

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April 3, 2014
Knowing the difference between primary and secondary sources is  essential for students working on research projects. In the video below, LeFever from Commoncraft explains this difference using as example the story of Great Storm that hit England in the 18th century. Here is how he went about doing it:

To learn about this storm students will use two major sources of information to establish the facts and  represent the most accurate version of the event:

Primary sources
These are first hand accounts of  what exactly happened told by those people who directly experienced and lived the event. These accounts can come in different formats such as:  documents, memoires, interview scripts, scientific documents and many more.These primary materials are the best sources for writing a research paper on the event under study as they come from people who were actually there when the event happened.

However, while primary sources are essential for doing research on this event , students may also draw on information provide by  secondary sources.

Secondary sources
Secondary sources include  documentation and analysis of primary sources and other relevant information after the fact. For instance, a research paper in which the researcher gathered and analyzed the different primary sources about the event and came up with new insights  through comparing the event  with other similar events in history is considered a secondary source.

Watch the video to learn more about the difference between primary and secondary sources.