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ENG 111 (Tucker): Search Tips

Created for Jessie Tucker's ENG 111 Spring 2021

Pro Tips: Keyword Searching

  • Unlike in Google and in other search engines, you may not get satisfactory results if you type an entire sentence, such as "What is the effect of advertising in mass media on teenage consumers?" You need to pick out the key phrases, words, and concepts,
  • Come up with as many variations on your topic keywords as possible. Children, teenagers, adolescents, try them all. 
    • Each search may give you different results, and each database will respond differently. 
    • In advanced searching, use OR to combine these terms.
  • Look for links to subject headings, often located at the bottom of a library record. Click on the links that describe your topic best.
    • Add any useful terms you find to your list of keywords to search.
  • Read all the sidebars and use them to limit your search. 
  • In advanced searches, use AND to combine your keywords: Advertising AND Teenagers. Use OR to combine synonyms Teenagers OR Adolescents.

What is peer review?

Peer review is a process in which experts in the field analyze and evaluate a journal article or conference proceeding based on the research methods, research conducted, conclusions, and overall quality of the article before it is accepted for publication. Articles that have gone through this process are sometimes called "refereed." 

A basketball referee with a stern expression and a whistle in their mouth points with 2 fingers at something outside the image.

When you search in a library database, limit your search to scholarly and peer reviewed journals to find the most reliable research on a topic.

The Library's Search Bars

Search All BC Library Resources

Limiting to Scholarly Resources 

Select "Scholarly and Peer Review" to limit your initial search. (Note: our "articles" search has this limit in place for you)