Before selecting a topic to research, be sure to understand the the assignment. Check with your instructor about specific guidelines.
Do you need to include specific types of sources (e.g. scholarly, books, popular press, etc)?
When is the assignment due? How much time do you have for research? The earlier you start your project the better.
Is the currency of the information important? For example, do you need to only use information from the last five years? Check with your instructor. This is often one of the requirements of the assignment.
Using Boolean logic means using command to connect your search words. It helps you find better information and avoud the irrelevant. The Boolean connectors are And, Or, and Not.
Example: What is the impact of college binge drinking on grades?
Identify the keywords in your question. For this example College, binge drinking, and grades.
And, connects these concepts so you get results that have both search terms. You are telling the search engine to look for items that contain all of your search terms. This will narrow your search so you will retrieve fewer results.
For example, College AND "Binge drinking" AND Grades will give you articles represented in the shaded area. With
Or connects these concepts so you get results that have at least one (or more) of your search terms. You are telling the search engine to look for any of these search terms. Use it with synonyms to broaden your search. You will retrieve a greater number of results.
For example College OR University will give you results that contain either term represented in all the shaded areas.
Combine these search strategies for an even more powerful search. Use parentheses to separate groups of search words.
For example, you may want to combine the following keywords into one search: College, University, "Binge drinking", alcohol, grades, "academic achievement"
(College OR University) AND ("Binge drinking" OR alcohol) AND (grades OR "academic achievement")
Not will eliminate terms from a search. If you want to search for articles about alcohol but not other drugs, you could search for (College OR University) AND ("Binge drinking" OR alcohol) AND (grades OR "academic achievement") NOT drugs
The University of Central Oklahoma recognizes the university's main campus is located on the traditional lands of the Caddo and Wichita people.
Visit the UCO Land Acknowledgement website to learn more.