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Information searching & Search strategies Humanities Yr 1 Nic Howorth Senior Assistant Librarian.

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Presentation on theme: "Information searching & Search strategies Humanities Yr 1 Nic Howorth Senior Assistant Librarian."— Presentation transcript:

1 Information searching & Search strategies Humanities Yr 1 Nic Howorth Senior Assistant Librarian

2 After this session you should be able to …. Identify key information resources Start to develop a search strategy Use Summon and Subject Databases to find Literature for your assignments

3 Search Strategy……? Before you start searching you need to plan What kind of information are you looking for? Where you will look? What words describe your topic / concepts? The search process is ongoing The more you read and learn, the more focused your searching will become Find more words to describe your topic

4 Before you start looking… identify key words Essay Question “The First World War seems to have been pivotal in generating class awareness and shaping social relations”. Discuss with reference to the literature. Miles, A (2002) “Social Sturcture ” IN: Wrigley, C ed (2002) A companion to early twentieth- century Britain, Blackwell Publishing, pp. 350 TIP: What are the main themes?

5 Identify Key Words Essay Question The First World War seems to have been pivotal in generating class awareness and shaping social relations Discuss with reference to the literature ?KEYWORDS? First World War AND Class Awareness AND Social Relations

6 Alternative words and Synonyms.. World War 1WW1First World War Class / Social Structure Class SystemClass Society TIP: Use a Thesaurus to identify SYNONYMS (Some Databases have a thesuari to help you identify indexed key words

7 Search smarter, search faster…..

8 Search Tips…. Boolean operators/ logic Keyword searching not natural language: databases combine keywords in a structured way Boolean logic: AND = narrows results OR = expands results NOT = excludes Some databases (e.g. library catalogue, Google, Summon) automatically use AND. Others require you to enter the Boolean operators WW1 AND Society First World War AND Home Front WW1 AND Society OR Class System NOT “United States”

9 Search Tips…. Phrase searching helps you find words side by side e.g. “Managing Orgnanisations” Truncation helps broaden your search by finding plurals, words with the same “stem”, alternative spelling e.g. Manag* will find managing, manager, managers e.g. Europ* will find Europe and European Wildcard, proximity searches, truncation, phrase searching, Broader, narrower terms…..

10 SUMMON for electronic resources.. OR Student Portal

11 Individual Databases Electronic Resources for History Most of the time the search box within Summon will be sufficient, but there are a few subject specific databases you may wish to use. Some resources will require you to enter your username and password. British History Online is a digital library containing some of the core printed primary and secondary sources for the medieval and modern history of the British Isles. This website was created by the Institute of Historical Research and the History of Parliament Trust and aims to support academic research. British Humanities Index (BHI) is an international abstracting and indexing tool for research in the humanities, including History, BHI indexes over 400 internationally respected journals and weekly magazines published in the UK and other English speaking countries, as well as quality newspapers published in the UK.

12 Individual Databases JSTOR is a database of more than a thousand academic journals and over one million images, letters, and other primary sources, It is one of the world's most trusted sources for academic content across a wide range of subjects and is used for research, teaching, and learning. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (DNB) is a collection of over 50,000 biographies of people in British history from all walks of life including artists, scientists, writers, explorers, performers, industrialists, politicians, church leaders, soldiers, mariners, doctors, lawyers and eccentrics. The biographies have been written by experts and provide up-to-date information which is concise and readable. Times Digital Archive ( ) is a database by which researchers can search through the complete digital edition of The Times (London), using keyword searching and hit-term highlighting to retrieve full facsimile images of either a specific article or a complete page. The entire newspaper is captured, with all articles, advertisements and illustrations/photos divided into categories to facilitate searching.

13 Demonstration... Summon Databases Finding citations

14 Demonstration... Finding citations Rubinstein, D (1977) “Wealth, elites and the class structure of modern Britain”, Past and Present, 76 pp Baines, D & Johnson, P (1999) “In search of the ‘traditional’ working class: social mobility and occupational continuity in interwar London”, Economic History Review, 52 pp


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