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Maple Woods - Using the Web for Research

Websites can be used for college-level research. The key to effective use is evaluating the sites.

Online Databases vs. the Web

Information on the Web is freely available to anyone with Internet access.  You must evaluate what you find more carefully because anyone can put information on the Internet.

 

Online databases are web-based sources of periodical articles and reference information to which the library subscribes.  Many contain full-text articles from magazines, journals, or newspapers.  Others contain encyclopedia-type articles, biographies, reports, excerpts from books and periodicals, government documents, quick facts, and indexes to articles.  Because most information in subscription online databases has gone through an editorial process where one or more people evaluate manuscripts, the information is usually more credible than that found on free websites.

 

How Should I Search?

Determine what you are researching.  Express it in the form of a question or thesis statement.

 

Identify key concepts in your question or statement.  Use these keywords in your search query.   

                                                                  OR 

Begin with a broad topic. Think of a narrower aspect of that topic. Use these keywords in your search query. 

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