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MGT 201 - Introduction to Business

A guide to basic resources for Business research.

Searching Strategies

Searching Strategies

Introduction to [Subject]

This guide gives you an overview of the best searching strategies when conducting research in databases or online.  If you need help navigating WorldCat or any EBSCO database, scroll to the bottom for some image examples.  For instructions on how to evaluate what you find, visit the "Evaluating Resources" page.

What Are Scholarly Databases?

What Are Scholarly Databases?

 

Advanced Searching Strategies

Four Advanced Search Strategies

Advanced Kinds of Search Strategies

There are four kinds of searching options. Good searchers are aware of each one and when and how to use them interchangeably or based on the database requirements.  Accomplished and skilled researchers are able to determine basic aspects of database organization using multiple strategies like these. When researching it is useful to understand background information, bibliographies, and the vocabulary of the discipline. You should use a wide variety of tools and use them wisely, and not depend on one specific source.


1. Word Strings:

Can also be thought of as building-block searching. Taking major words or phrases from your topic or thesis, use them various combinations or with synonyms to search databases.

2. Boolean searching:

Uses particular words to expand or narrow your search results. (They are very useful in word strings.)  See a more detailed description in the next section.

3. Changing Natural Language to Scholarly Language:
    (or subject headings and sub-headings)

Scholars don’t always use words that everyone else does. Using language from your class, textbooks, and other scholarly sources can often reveal more resources. You must also use subject headings or at least be aware of them when using databases like PubMed and Medline.

4. Citation Pearl-Growing:

If you find a good and current article, try exploring the sources cited in footnotes or bibliographies. This can help you discover the primary authors who are doing research in your field, as well as other useful resources. As always, be sure to evaluate the resource.

 

Boolean Operators & Examples

Connecting Words (Boolean Operators)

By using these connectors when employing library searches you will achieve the best results.

AND

  • This will narrow your search to include all terms that are connected with AND.
  • For example, "spiritual formation" AND "Fowler"
  • requires that both terms be present in the title, abstract, or keywords of a citation.
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OR 

  • This broadens your search to include more options based on your search terms.
  • (college OR university) AND "Scripture Engagement" AND ("small groups" OR "discipleship groups")
  • Either the term college OR the term university must be present along with the phrase either "small groups" OR "discipleship groups" in the title, abstract, or keywords assigned to a citation.
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NOT 

  • This excludes a term from a search and thus helps you narrow your search results. You may find that a search may be too broad or not related to what you are seeking. The NOT operator excludes a term from the search results.
    • For example: "Children's ministry" AND (education NOT school)
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Other Searching Techniques

Other Searching Techniques

Tips for Efficient Searching

Use an * (asterisk) in your term. 

  • When applied to a root of a word, it will search for multiple forms of a word at one time.
    • immigra* = immigrant, immigration
    • polic* = policy, policies

Use Quotation Marks around a common/important phrase 

  • Sometimes, your keyword is really a key phrase. Quotation marks will ensure you search those exact words in that order.
    • "child development" or "climate change"

Add Additional Search Term

  • If you have way too many results (>200), try adding another keyword or search term.

Use Limit/Refine options 

  • Narrow the number of results you need to review by limiting the date range, or to scholarly/academic journals (when needed), or to Full Text (if you want immediate access to the article itself without using Interlibrary Loan).
  • Limit by Source Type: journal article, newspaper, magazine, etc.

Find the Permalink 

  • To avoid losing access to articles (even leaving a browser open to a particular article can be lost after a few hours!), look at the Detailed Record of an item for the Permalink or Persistent Link.
  • Do not use the link in the address bar!

The Permalink will give permanent access to the citation or article. Save it! Email it to yourself! Copy it into a Word doc!

Searching EBSCO Host Databases

Searching EBSCO Host Databases

Searching Academic Search Premier & other EBSCOhost databases

These still images provide some captions to help you understand how to search smarter and more efficiently.

Entering Search terms in Academic Search Premier

 

Next, try other ways of narrowing by Source Type or access the PDF Full Text of the article or request through Interlibrary Loan.

Other Limits in ASP and how to access articles

Searching WorldCat

Searching WorldCat

Searching WorldCat

Begin by typing in search terms. 

  • Related terms can be connected with OR to search both at one time.
  • Major concepts of your topic can been connected with AND.
  • Save time searching by using an asterisk. The (*) on [immigra* AND polic*] will look for any number of endings for those root words.

    immigra* = immigrant, immigration

    polic* = policy, policies

WorldCat complex search with limit for books only in Zondervan Library

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