You can easily find scholarly sources in the M.P. Baker Library Databases.
A database is like a digital file cabinet that can be locked to allow only certain people access. It is well organized to allow people to locate information quickly by using sophisticated search and browsing tools. Plus, the information is high-quality – it has been selected by professionals and reviewed for accuracy. Many databases also provide access to cool perks like generated citations!
The Internet is like a digital bulletin board that is open to anyone and everyone to post or review. The digital bulletin board is extremely disorganized because it does not have an efficient, standard organizational system. Additionally, the information has not been selected for quality or reviewed for accuracy; in fact, anyone can post whatever they like. You also have to deal with hassles like annoying advertisements.
Journals are published by professional organizations. The information in journals is often referred to as "peer-reviewed". That is because the professional organization publishing the journal is made up of peers that review each others research before allowing it to be published. When someone writes an article for a journal, they must provide their research information, statistics, sources, and other information to support what they have written. The author is held accountable for what is written. The information must be factual and accurate to the best of the writer's knowledge and peers from the professional organization must be in agreement with the information before it can be published. By comparison, anyone can submit articles to a newspaper or magazine with little accountability for the information provided.
Search engines are great for gleaning information from the Internet. However, they are companies in business for profit. Remember they are more concerned with which contributors paid them the most money to make sure certain pages appear first in a result list than they are about you finding authoritative information. They bring you the results and expect you to be discerning enough to select authoritative information. You can, however, use Google Scholar as a more narrowed path to scholarly articles on the internet. Check out the video below.
An authoritative website is one that is usually created and maintained by a professional organization, a research institution, or government agencies. Therefore, most authoritative websites end with the extensions .gov, .org, .edu. However, some authoritative websites do have .com extensions. In order for a website to be considered authoritative, it should provide contact information for the person creating and maintaining the site as well as a current copyright date. It should also provide information about the person or organization that assumes responsibility and accountability for the information provided on the site. Most authoritative sites will also include a physical address and phone number. If you can not find out who provides the information for the site, the credentials of the person providing the information, or contact information you should be leary of using the site for research purposes even if the word "official" is used on the site name.
There are several image and photograph sites which allow you to search for either public domain or CC licensed images. If you are looking for images, start with these:
GOOGLE WILL NOT AUTO COMPRESS AND RESIZE COPIED/PASTED PHOTOS
COPY/PASTE WILL OFTEN APPEAR AS BROKEN LINKS WHEN UPLOADED TO CANVAS.
BEST is to INSERT a photo...NOT COPY/PASTE!!
It is good practice to look for the [Advanced Search] option in each database that you use. The advanced search page will usually make it very clear as to how you can control your search using Boolean search techniques, limiters, field searching, etc.
Boolean Searching is the cornerstone to an effective search strategy. Boolean searching refers to searching using a combination of words and the three Boolean Operators: AND, OR, NOT. A best practice is to capitalize your Boolean Operators.
AND will make your search smaller. If you are retrieving too many records on your topic, try adding another search term with the operator AND.
For example: "krispy kreme" AND marketing
OR will make your search bigger. If you are retrieving too few records on your topic, try adding another search term with the operator OR.
For example: (adolescents OR teenagers)
NOT will exclude a word from your search results. If you are retrieving too many records on an unrelated topic, try eliminating a word with the operator NOT.
For example: dolphins NOT football
To search for two or more words in the exact order in which they are entered you should enclose the phrase in quotation marks " ".
For example: "obsessive compulsive disorder"
Truncation allows you to search the root form of a word with all its different endings by adding a symbol to the end of a word. Truncation symbols vary by database (check the help screens or ask a Librarian), but are usually one of the below:
! (exclamation point)
? (question mark)
For example: advertis* will search for advertise, advertisement, advertising, advertises
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