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ENGL 306OL: Report Writing

Search Strategy

Search Tips

  • Place quotation marks around phrases, names, or titles
  • Use the asterisk symbol (*) at the end of a word to retrieve variant endings of that word
    • ex. bank* will retrieve: banks, banking or banker
  •  Use a question mark within a word as a wildcard
    • ex. wom?n will retrieve woman or women

Brainstorm Search Terms

  1. Once you have chosen a topic, write it down in the form of a question or brief statement:
    • What is the relationship between SAT scores and college success?
  2. Pull out the keywords and phrases that are most specific to your topic:
    • "SAT scores" and "college success"
  3. Take those keywords and phrases and brainstorm related terms, concepts or synonyms
    • SAT scores > "scholastic aptitude test" or "college admission test"
    • college > "university" or "higher education"
    • success > achievement
  4. Formulate a search strategy using boolean search, wildcards, phrases, etc.
    • (SAT OR "scholastic aptitude test") AND (college OR universit*) AND (succe* OR achieve*)

Document Reader