Academic sources are written by and for researchers with the express purpose of contributing to the scholarly conversation on a topic. These types of sources are expensive--the library pays millions of dollars a year to provide access to them in library databases. Searching in library databases requires you to search using keywords, the most important words and concepts from your research topic, so the first thing you should do is brainstorm keywords for your research topic. Be sure to include broader and narrower keywords so you can play around with your search!
Example topic: LGBTQ+ acceptance in modern sports
Keywords: LGBTQ+, queer, lesbian, gay, transgender, non-binary, genderfluid, sports, sporting environments, athletic teams, team sports, professional sports, athletes, Olympics, 21st century, basketball, track and field, ice skating, football, discrimination, stereotypes, inclusion, acceptance, equality, Adam Rippon, Megan Rapinoe, Jason Collins, Caster Semenya
Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies