The most important resources for Philosophy at Union County College Libraries would probably be the Reference book collection. It's also the best starting point. Here are three ways to get started:
Major branches of philosophy include Metaphysics, Epistemology, Logic, Ethics, Politics, and Aesthetics. Exploring one of these areas might be a useful approach to finding a topic.
As in all student research, finding a topic that is broad enough to provide a lot of resources and narrow enough to explore in a short paper is a challenge.
You know your topic is too broad if it can be categorized as "All about XYZ." Topics broad enough to cover "all about" something tend to be very vague and general. You'll have a hard time writing anything in five to seven pages that your professor doesn't already know. Causing a professor to snore is hazardous to your GPA.
You know your topic is too narrow, or altogether unsuitable, if there are NO resources for this topic. Before you give up on it, though, ask a reference librarian for help with your topic. Often, a librarian can find a way to reframe your topic and help you search more effectively.
Once you have a topic, start with a reference book, especially
These books contain introductions to many well-established philosophy topics --these are those broad "all about" articles that you read first. Your job is to learn what has already been said and find a narrower topic that you can explore in greater depth. As you read and explore, try to think of a researchable question that can be answered in a short paper. Rather than "Machiavelli's Philosophy" or "Was Machiavelli Immoral?" (too broad), ask "How Did Political Events in 15th -Century Florence Impact Machiavelli's Philosophy?" or "What Did the President Learn from Machiavelli?" A narrower topic will actually require you to read more information, to read more broadly, and to read more carefully. You'll learn more and write a better paper.