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Search Tips

When searching databases, the goal is to find a small number (e.g. 10-30) of articles relevant to your topic. Here are some tips for improving your search results:

  • Most databases allow you to choose a date range, so you can limit the search to recently-published articles only.
  • Most allow you to choose English articles only, which can further reduce your results.
  • Many also allow you to limit your results to peer-reviewed journals, which contain high-quality scholarly articles.
  • In keyword searching, a truncation symbol (usually " * ") expands your search by including various forms of a root word, e.g. memor* which will retrieve:






memory, etc.

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