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Doing Research

Constructing searches

There are several strategies to follow in order to construct effective searches. These strategies are basically related to the keywords that you are using.

Defining keywords

Keywords are impact words representing some of the main concepts in a research topic. These words can be used as queries when using a discovery tool, an online catalog, or databases to retrieve relevant information sources.

Turn your research question into Keywords

Your research question includes the keywords which are relevant to your topic. This is why you should extract them from your research question and use them in searching.

Example: Does electronic surveillance threaten privacy?

Impact words: electronic surveillance privacy

Avoid noise words like does, or threaten. These keywords do not add meaning or don’t carry any content value. They may prevent you from retrieving sufficient results. Your research should result to in an understanding about how and if electronic surveillance threatens privacy.

In this part of the guide you will find:

  • how to develop keyword selection strategies.
  • how to use advanced searching techniques.
  • why browsing practices are useful.

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