Effective searching of eresources Unit 1.3: OUTLINE Introduction
Search preparation Searching Refining a search Boolean operators Truncation Evaluating a search 02/24/2020 2 Introduction The volume of electronic information is overwhelming
It is not easy to identify and access relevant information Search skills can assist in retrieving relevant information and saving time Librarians hold the key to such competencies They need to understand effective search strategies 02/24/2020 3 Preparing a search strategy
Effective searching is a process Define a search topic Identify possible search terms Refine a search strategy 02/24/2020 4
Defining a Search Topic Your search topic Sexual violence in armed conflicts What do you know about the topic? Define the scope Regional coverage (continent, region, country, etc.) e.g. in Africa, in Kenya, in Western Kenya 02/24/2020 5 Identifying Search Terms
What are the possible terms you can use for searching? Examples Sexual violence Sexual harassment, sexual crime, sexual assault, sexual abuse, rape Armed conflicts Regional conflicts, war, armed forces, women in armed conflicts, 02/24/2020 6
Identifying Search Terms Issues to consider Synonyms (mobile phones, cellular phones) Plural/singular forms (woman, women) Spelling variations (honour, honor) Variations of root word (feminism, feminist, feminine.) Acronyms (CEO, Chief Executive Office) Lower/upper case 02/24/2020 7
Where to start the search Library website INASP country page Publisher platform Google or other search engine Other logical starting point
02/24/2020 8 Searching Any of the identified terms and related terms can be used in the search separately The end results will be overwhelming making selection fairly time consuming To enhance accuracy and save on time, one has to refine the search by combining search terms 02/24/2020
9 Predicting results How many documents would you like to retrieve? A few very specific ones? Lots of general ones? 02/24/2020 10
Refining a Search Using the identified search terms separately is a broad search which may result in overwhelming results To refine the search one has to narrow the search Boolean Operators assist a researcher to combine two or more search terms to enhance accuracy 02/24/2020 11 Boolean Operators Boolean Operators consists of 3 words
AND OR NOT These words can be used to combine search terms to narrow or broaden the search 02/24/2020 12 Boolean Operators AND: retrieves a document on condition that both search
terms used are present e.g. Sexual violence AND armed conflicts OR: retrieves documents with either of the search terms used e.g. sexual violence OR armed conflicts NOT: Excludes documents with one of the search terms from the results Sexual violence NOT rape 02/24/2020 13
Truncation Truncation is another strategy for broadening a search It helps to retrieve related terms in one search It also solves the problem of singular and plural But truncation is used with a code e.g. $ or * This depends on the search engine used 02/24/2020 14 Truncation
EXAMPLES Search Topic is Economics and development Economic development will certainly be useful to this topic Econ*. Will retrieve documents with both terms 02/24/2020 15 Field searching Most publisher resources offer advanced search functions
Author Journal title Article title Date ranges Abstract 02/24/2020 16 02/24/2020 17
Search modifications Learner-centred alternative spellings? Pedagogical where should we truncate? Education what will it produce? Train the trainer any irrelevant items? How would you use this? 02/24/2020
18 Evaluating a Search Strategy Too many results? Review strategy Use more specific terms Combine search terms using AND or NOT Too few results? Review strategy
Use broader terms Combine search terms using OR Satisfied? Download documents 02/24/2020 19 Exercise 1.3.1 Practical searching Resources linked from www.inasp.info
http://www.inasp.info/en/training-resources/op en-access-resources / 02/24/2020 20 Thank you Thank you Any questions? Any questions?
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons AttributionShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. 02/24/2020 21
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