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FYI 101/2: Traylor

Library resources for Garrett Traylor's First Year Inquiry students!


Some assignments in FYI courses may ask you to come up with creative projects rather than a traditional research essay.  This tab provides some information about resources that might be useful in the creation of these kinds of projects, including information regarding:

  • Book reviews
  • Children’s books
  • Comic books
  • Podcasts
  • Presentations
  • Videos
  • Zines

Book Reviews

Children's Books

Similar to the comic book option, you may find graphic design software such as Photoshop, available through the EDGE Center and Olin computer labs here on campus, useful to your project.  Note that the library also has a robust children's book collection on our lower floor that you can browse for examples and inspiration.

Comic Books

Here I have listed some resources for advice on planning, writing, and paneling comic books or graphic novels.  Graphic design software such as Photoshop is available through the EDGE Center and Olin computer labs here on campus.  There have also been some very creative works using more basic software such as MS Paint (see for example: Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh).  The library also has a growing graphic novel collection that you might consult for examples and inspiration.


Most professional podcasts use some degree of specialized equipment.  For the purposes of this assignment, you can keep things simple and record audio on your phone or computer, and then use software on your computer to edit that audio.  You can usually transfer audio files to your computer by connecting your phone with a USB cable or by exporting/uploading the file from your phone to Google Drive (this may require downloading the Google Drive app to your phone). Digital voice recorders are also available for checkout at the library.


Presentations are a common format not only in academia, but in the professional world. There are many tools that can be used to create a presentation -- we will focus on a few of the best free options, and some universal tips to help to create an effective presentation.


Video essays are a common way of communicating information on a variety of different topics.  With the rise of YouTube especially, this format has become incredibly common.  Augustana's ITS department has camcorders and tripods available for checkout that can be useful tools for recording videos.  Many modern smartphones also have incredible 1080p or even 4k cameras, but remember that audio quality is important for videos too.  Below are some resources that can advise how to get the best video out of a smartphone, how to plan and script your video, and some tools for editing your footage.  You may also want to check out Vox Media's Earworm, TedEd, Every Frame a Painting, Lindsay Ellis, or Just Write for examples/inspiration.


Zines (pronounced ZEENS, short for "fanzines" or "magazines") are small-circulation self-published works that are normally made by hand and then reproduced with a photocopier. Zines first emerged in the 1930s among fans of science fiction, then caught on as informal, underground publications that focused on social and political activism in the ’60s, becoming popular with the punk rock scene in the '70s, and continuing in the activist tradition with the feminist punk scene in particular in the '90s.  The Tredway Library has a growing collection of zines that you can browse for examples and inspiration, and also has a zine making kit available at the Circulation Desk.