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After your library session you should be able to:
1. Construct an effective keyword search using Boolean operators appropriately.
2. Use a library database to find and access scholarly articles.
3. Understand the differences between scholarly and popular articles.
How Exactly Can Librarians Help Me?
Librarians help with the following research-related activities:
- Narrowing down a topic
- Suggesting resources for finding credible background information on a topic
- Coming up with effective search terms
- Finding books and articles
- Figuring out which research tools are the best fit for your topic (there are over 350 choices!)
- Getting more (and better) search results
- Saving, emailing and printing articles
- Getting books and articles from other libraries
- Creating bibliographies with RefWorks
Tips for Searching Catalogs and Databases
The following techniques can improve your success with online searching, whether you're searching a catalog for books or a database for articles:
- Enter phrases in quotes: "Boston Tea Party" "United States"
- Use truncation symbols to search for alternate word endings: In most databases, entering econom* searches for economy, economic, economics, economists, etc.
- If one term doesn't work, try a few others. Experiment with different vocabulary related to your topic. Brainstorm ideas for relevant keywords and use background sources such as encyclopedias for suggestions.
Reference Librarian Hours
The reference desk is in the IDEA Commons on the 1st floor of the Daley Library. Reference Librarians are on duty at the following times:
The desk is staffed by trained graduate students at other times the library is open.