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Upward Bound- History: How to Search

What to Do

  • Be specific!
    • Databases have too much specialized information in them to be appropriate for background research
  • Combine your ideas effectively using:
    • AND, to combine terms for specific results
    • OR, to allow for synonyms, and to broaden results
    • NOT, to exclude terms from your search

Helpful Video Tutorials

Click on the following links to view a short tutorial on each topic. For flash-free mobile and Apple devices click on

Introduction to Online Databases  (2:00)  

Search Strategies for  Finding Articles  (3:50)  

Finding Full-Text Articles  (2:46)  

The Different Types of Articles (Magazines, Journals and Newspapers)  (4:40)  

Scholarly Articles  (3:09)


    How to Search

    • Remember to seperate your keywords (ideas)
    • Notice that the word AND is already there for you
    • At least to start with, don't change anything in the drop-down menus

    • Look at the number of results your search brings you
      • If there are more than 100, you're not being specific enough
        • try adding another keyword to your search
      • If there are no results or too few results, you're being too specific
        • take some keywords out of your search
    • Remember to consider whether the publication date is important
    • Remember to check the box next to "Scholarly (Peer-reviewed) Journals

    • Remember, you don't have to search perfectly everytime-- there's a lot of hit and miss involved
    • Don't be discouraged if you have to start over and modify your search


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    Angela Lucero

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