You do not have to do your research alone. In fact, your professors want you to reach out to librarians for help.
InfoHawk+ is our UI Libraries' catalog plus. Search results contain items from our physical collections, electronic articles and books, and more.
Use databases strategically. The Find Articles page on this guide contains a list of databases and resources relevant to students completing disciplinary coursework. A description is provided for each resource. Some are more general. Some more specific. Each source will look slightly different but the search strategies demonstrated below work across resources.
Use a variety of terms to describe your topic. Keep a running list of terms you find as you search. You will often discover vocabulary related to your topic that you might not have thought of on your own.
Use quotation marks for phrase searching.
Use truncation to get the search tool (catalog, database, search engine) to search for a root word plus any possible endings.
Use AND, OR, and NOT to combine your search terms
Some resources have unique tools that allow you to get creative and concise with your searching for information. Examples below.
After you've found some resources for your assignment, it can be good to take a step back and consider what you've found. You might ask yourself: What perspectives are represented in these sources? What or whose perspectives might be missing?
Searching for sources written by authors who represent a specific community, affinity group, or identity can be challenging. Below are a few places you might go to seek out additional resources to diversify the perspectives included in your research.
The following exercise was developed by researchers from the Right Question Institute as a tool to support micro-democracy. Use this strategy whenever you need to reframe or refine your research focus.
GOAL: Brainstorm as many questions as possible about your research topic.
NOTE: All questions are good questions.