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Conducting an effective search.ppt - Wikispaces


									Conducting an Effective Search

 Tips for searching the Internet, electronic databases, and OPACs.
                   Basic tips
 Brainstorm a list of keywords, questions, phrases, or
  concepts for your topic. Keywords are significant
  words or terms in the title, abstract/summary, or text
  of an item that indicate its subject.

 Enter words in the search box that you think will
  appear on the Web page you want.

 Avoid common words (such as a, an, or the) unless
  they are part of a phrase.

 Use correct spelling.
 If you don't know the complete word, or aren't sure
  how to spell it, add an asterisk (*) to the end of what
  you do know. An asterisk can replace any number of
  letters at the end of a word. However, the * can't be
  used as a word's first or second letter or have any
  letters after it. For example, If you enter teach*, you
  will get a list of results with "teach", "teacher",
  "teaches", and "teaching".
 You can use a question mark (?) to replace a single
  letter. You can use more than one question mark in a
  word, but it can't be the first letter. Example: If you're
  not sure whether it's "allegators", allagators", or
  "alligators", search using all?gators.
 You can also use a question mark to find multiple
  forms of a word. Example: A search on wom?n finds
  both "woman" and "women".
               More search tips
 Put quotation marks around phrases or proper
  names. Example: “George Washington”

 Be specific. If you are searching for information about
  Florida, type "Florida". If you want to find information
  about vacationing in Florida, type "Florida vacation"

 Use correct spacing. If you search for
  "baseball cards," you will most likely receive a list of
  various collectibles. If you search for "baseballcards"
  you will likely find only a website with the address
     Conduct a Boolean Search
Computers cannot understand
 human language, but they can match
 words. By using a combination of
 keywords and Boolean operators you
 will improve the results of your
A Boolean search is made up of
 keywords connected by the logical
 operators AND, OR and NOT.
             Boolean Operators
  This is used to narrow your search by ensuring that all
  keywords used will appear in the search results. Example:
  cats AND dogs gives you only the titles that mention both
  cats and dogs.
  This is used to eliminate an unwanted concept or word in
  your search statement. Example: cats NOT dogs gives
  you only the titles about cats that do not mention dogs.
 OR
  This is used to broaden your search by retrieving any,
  some, or all of the keywords used in the search statement.
  Example: cats OR dogs gives you all the titles that
  mention cats or dogs or both.

 Click here for a visual representation of how Boolean
  operators work:
         Advanced Searches
Most search engines have a special
 advanced search page that allows you
 to increase the accuracy of your search.
You can filter using many options.
Look for the “Advanced Search" link.

Need more help? Read the "hints" and "help"

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