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ENGL 102

Keywords are key!

Many of us are accustomed to searching by typing entire questions into a search bar, in Google for example. However, this is not an effective search method in databases. For researching, it is important to use ONLY keywords, and actually, if you search with keywords on the open web you will find your results improve there too! 


In Databases

A little more help...

Chatting with a librarian (use the chat button at the top of this page) can be a great way to get useful keywords but if you want a couple more suggestions, try these-

  • Read a couple of news articles from reputable news sources (Wall Street Journal, for example) and pay attention to how researchers or experts describe your topic. Remember to make a note of the expert's name as well. You can search for their writing!
  • Check to see if OC Libraries have a Research Guide on your topic that might help.
  • Read some encyclopedia articles (while you should be cautious, you might even check Wikipedia for keywords)