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A Women and Gender Studies Library Guide

Primary resource analysis

Use these prompts as a thinking tool and inspiration to make notes about the primary resource you are analyzing 

Observe: I see

Prompts to help you see


What do you see?

What actions are available?

What do you wish you could do? 

What specific detail/s stand out to you?

Reflect: I think

Prompts to help you think


How do you feel?

What surprised you?

Did you note any relationships?

Do you note any reasons for things you had not considered before?

What are you concerned about? What is this really about? On the surface? On a deeper level?

What do you know for sure and what are you not certain about?

Is there something you think of doing? Is anything preventing you from doing it?

What support would you need to make it happen?

What aspects of this interest you the most?

Question: I wonder

Prompts to help you wonder


What do you want to learn/know more about? 







Additional questions

Media literacy questions: simplified and applicable to many materials such as images, videos, text, artifacts, treaties, government documents:

  • Who made this?
  • What is the agenda of the maker?
  • What techniques used reflect the agenda (to convince me to believe the message)? 
  • What is not shown, who is left out?
  • How many other people see this differently? 

Questions about vocabulary and descriptive terms

  • What perspectives can you use to investigate this word and its use? 
  • What are the word origins of the term? How do they change over time? 
  • Are there other ways of thinking that this term disregards? 
  • What are the related terms?