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SPAN 405: Bitter Flavors of the Americas: Sugar, Coffee & Bananas

The BEAM Framework

BEAM is a framework for thinking about the various ways in which a resource might be used to make a researched argument. Joseph Bizup, an English professor at Boston University, outlined the framework in a 2008 article. The idea has since been refined and adapted by many others.

Beam Model

BEAM Video

This three-minute video from Portland State University Library explains the BEAM research model developed by Joseph Bizup (2008).

BEAM Framework worksheet

You can copy and use this worksheet to organize what role each resource will play in your research

Synthesizing Information

from GCFLearnFree

Synthesizing Sources Worksheet

You can sort the literature from your research in different ways, for example:

  • by themes or concepts
  • historically or chronologically
  • by methodology 

You should read your sources carefully and find the main idea(s) in each source. You will want to look for similarities in your sources. Are some sources talking about the same ideas or concepts? You can copy this synthesis worksheet and use it to track your source synthesis.