Finding Information on the Internet: A TutorialRecommended Search Strategy: Analyze your topic & Search with peripheral vision
UC Berkeley - Teaching Library Internet Workshops
|About This Tutorial | Table of Contents | Contact us|
#1. Analyze your topic to decide where to begin
Use our printable form (PDF file) as a guide in analyzing your topic.
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|Does your topic...||
|Step #2. Pick the right starting place using this table:|
|YOUR TOPIC'S FEATURES:||Search Engines||Subject Directories||Specialized Databases||Find an Expert||LUCK|
|Distinctive or word or phrase?||Enclose
phrases in " ".
Test run your word or phrase in Google.
|Search the broader concept, what your term is "about."||Want
data? Facts? Statistics?
All of something?
One of many like things?
Look for a specialized database or webpage, or Custom Search Engine on your topic.
a specialized subject directory
on your topic.
|Fortune favors the bold!
Keep your mind open.
Learn as you search.
|NO distinctive words or phrases?||Use more than one term or phrase in " " to get fewer results.||Try to find distinctive terms in Subject Directories|
|Seek an overview?||
|Look for a specialized Subject Directory focused on your topic|
|Narrow aspect of broad or common topic?||Boolean searching as in Yahoo! Search.||
Look for a Directory focused on the broad subject.
|Synonyms, equivalent terms, variants||Choose
search engines with Boolean OR,
Truncation, or Field limiting.
|Confused? Need more information?||
|Step #3. Learn as you go & VARY your approach with what you learn.|
Don't assume you know what you want to find. Look at search results and see what you might use in addition to what you've thought of.
|Step #4. Don't bog down in any strategy that doesn't work.|
Switch from search engines to directories and back.
|Step #5. Return to previous strategies better informed.|
|Search Engines |Subject Directories | Meta-Search Engines | Invisible Web|
Search Strategies: Search with Peripheral Vision
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