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Business Research Toolkit: About the Program

The Sterne Library's award winning Business Research Toolkit Program is offered each Fall and Spring semester. The hands-on program introduces participants to business resources and research strategies.



Registration for the Fall 2021 Business Research Toolkit is now closed. Complete this online form to be notified of future offerings of the Business Research Toolkit. Email Kara Van Abel at with any questions.

About the Business Research Toolkit

The program consists of 8 modules (5 required and 3 elective), each of which take approximately 1.5 hours to complete. You must pass 7 of the 8 modules to receive the certificate of completion.

Each module is offered online in an asynchronous format within Canvas. It takes 7 weeks to complete the toolkit at the pace of one module per week. 

              Required Modules 

              Company Research

              Industry Research

              News Searching

              Demographics and Business Statistics

              International Business Research

              Elective Modules (Choose 2)              

              Career Research

              Investment Research

              Patent & Intellectual Property Research

The Business Research Toolkit (originally the Business Research Certificate) is a program taught by the Liaison to the Collat School of Business. Created in 2010 by Jeff Graveline, the program was developed to meet the business research needs of students, faculty, and staff across campus. Since it was started, hundreds of students from all backgrounds have received a certificate of completion. The program was originally designed to cover specific areas of business research including: the research process, company research, industry research, advanced news searching, demographics & business statistics, and international research. The program also includes a module designed to cover all aspects of academic dishonesty.  

Kara Van Abel took over the program in the spring of 2017 adding new modules and re-designing the format to make the Business Research Toolkit accessible to anyone regardless of their location or schedule. While it was only taught on-campus for the first several years, it is now offered in a fully online, asynchronous classroom within Canvas.

A complete list of UAB students, faculty, and staff who have completed the Business Research Toolkit as well as the Business Research Certificate can be found on the Certificate Recipients Tab of this guide. 

New Module Poll

New elective modules are currently under consideration for future offerings of the toolkit. Please take a moment and help me identify which ones would be the most useful. Which of the following research areas are you most interested in learning about?

Research Topics for New Module
Researching non-profits: 8 votes (22.22%)
Advertising & marketing research: 9 votes (25%)
Evaluating sources: 1 votes (2.78%)
Basics of copyright & business ethics: 2 votes (5.56%)
Small business & entreprenuership: 12 votes (33.33%)
Citing business sources: 4 votes (11.11%)
Citing business sources: 0 votes (0%)
Total Votes: 36

For Help, Contact Kara

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Kara Van Abel
Mervyn H. Sterne Library
Room 157E
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