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Geology & Environmental Science

Search Strategies

A successful search often begins with effective search terms. Where do you find terms?

Wikipedia is a great resource to start your list of keywords. Often in the first sentence of an entry, you will find synonyms; keep track of these terms as different keywords will work better within different resources.

You can also find search terms in your textbooks or reference sourcesAs you do your research, keep a running list of search terms as different databases may prefer different keywords. 

Google and Google Scholar

Google is a great way to find government information like maps, data, and reports. Using advanced search strategies can help you find the information that you need by filtering your results. Use the Google tip sheet below to learn how to use Google better to find what you need. 

Google Scholar is a great way to find scholarly articles or book citations.  After searching, look for features in your results that can help you find related articles:

  • The Cited By feature will show you who cited an article so you can follow the citation trail. 
  • Click Related Articles to find other articles on topic. 

Linking Google Scholar to Buswell's collection can help you find your results more efficiently. The PDF below shows you how to link Google Scholar to Buswell Library so you can check if we have access to a resource. Also, use the Cited By feature to follow the scholarly conversation.