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High School Classes

This guide is created for classes who are attending library instruction sessions at the University of Calgary

How do I search?

Find the keywords.

Keywords are the main ideas that you are searching.

Boolean logic uses AND, OR and NOT to connect keywords.

“AND”    Narrows your search strategy - if your search strategy is: japan AND earthquake 

“OR”      Broadens your search strategy - if your search strategy is: nuclear power OR nuclear energy 

“NOT”    Eliminates certain search terms - if your search strategy is: economic NOT social


Search tips

  • Start your search broad:  (with fewer search terms) and then narrow it down.
  • Don't be discouraged! Your first search won't be perfect - keep trying!
  • Look beyond the first page of results. Your perfect article might be on the second or the fifth page of results.
  • "Citation chain" - Once you find one relevant article look at the reference list at the end of the article. This method of finding articles is called citation chaining. 

Where else do I search?

These three databases are good places to find articles.

Academic Search Complete (EBSCO) 
Covers many different subjects. 

Web of Science 
Best for topics in science or social science. Look for "review articles" to help you get started."Review articles are an attempt by one or more writers to sum up the current state of the research on a particular topic."

Google Scholar 
Version of Google for scholarly publications. 

For the complete list of databases the Library subscribes to click on the Search Collections tab off the Library homepage or here. You can see them arranged by subject.

Check out this list of freely available databases that you can access from home. 

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