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Tarleton State University Libraries Unit 4
SEARCHING EFFECTIVELY
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In order to efficiently and effectively find materials, researchers need to understand how to
•  identify terms to use in searches,
•  formulate and modify searches, and
•  use the features of search tools.

This unit will help you understand these processes so the time you spend looking for research materials is productive and yields useful materials.

OVERVIEW:
The components of this unit discuss and illustrate how to

•  identify key concepts and determine search terms,
•  find and use controlled vocabulary terms,
•  determine alternative search terms,
•  modify (refine) searches,
•  use advanced options to limit searches, and
•  locate search assistance (print and online).
The last parts of this unit offer activities related to Unit 4 topics and a review.

GOALS:
After completing this unit, you should have strategies by which you can
•  evaluate information needs to determine key concepts and possible search terms,
•  locate alternative search terms to use in specific search tools,
•  modify (refine) searches to enhance their effectiveness,
•  obtain search assistance as needed, and
•  create and use effective search strategies.

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Updated 7/2004