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Library Research Guides

Comm 121: Evaluating Information and Analyzing Media

Suggested resources for students in Comm 121, Winter 2017, Professor Van den Bulck.

Handy tips and tricks to help you search more effectively!

SEARCH TIPS for Mirlyn, library databases, and the web (applicable to many search engines, including Google)

  • PHRASE SEARCHING

Put phrases in quotation marks:  "hurricane katrina"

  • TRUNCATION

Use an asterisk for truncation (any ending of a term):  communicat* will find communication, communicates, communicating, communicator, etc.

  • MANY KEYWORDS

Many words may describe the same or related concept (movies, film, cinema, motion pictures)

  • BOOLEAN "OR" (broaden your search)

To search for any one of a group of terms, use a capital "OR" and parentheses:  (movies OR film OR cinema)

  • BOOLEAN "AND" (narrow your search)

To search for all terms, use "AND":  violence AND movies AND children

  • COMBINE THE ABOVE STRATEGIES: 

violence AND (movies OR film OR cinema OR "motion pictures") AND (children OR kids OR adolescents)

  • SEARCHING IS ITERATIVE: 

To be effective and thorough, go back and try searching multiple times with many different keywords