Effective searching will allow you to find information that you are researching. With online methods one can find materials through google, online newspapers, magazines and journals. The possibilities are endless. When using search engines one must decide what information to view, which sources are viable and then review and refine your search. When searching for the exact topic be specific and don’t use phrases. Using quotation marks will also help with finding exact phrases (Effective Searching, (n.d.).
Primary Sources give a sense of the past. One should choose the sources that will support the topic of choice. It’s the first-hand information that will provide historical document results from experiments, statistical data or creative writing. The use of Primary Sources will help the researcher better understand the topic by viewing direct evidence (Primary & Secondary, (n.d.).
Because of the wealth of information on the internet and not knowing what is true verifying the source is very important. Asking the right questions is important. Questions such as: Is it clear whose responsible for the content? Are the sources clearly listed so they can be validated through other sources? Are there any links describing goals or purpose of the sponsoring organization or company? Are there any dates to indicate when content was written or how it was placed on the web? Is the target audience identified? Is it appropriate for what you are looking for? Does the site look well organized? Asking these key and critical questions will help you verify the validity of the sources (Evaluating Internet, (2009).
Keeping your sources organized is essential. You can keep web sources on Journals, index cards or computer files to be organized. You can use tracking systems such as Pinterest, Net Vibes, InvestGater or Academic Search Elite to manage sources. These record tracking systems will help you from researching to same sources over and over again and to keep you from looking at the same dead ends or articles that are no help to you. Tracking what is relevant to your topic is necessary. Find a handy template or create your own to help you with your organization (Campus Academic, (n.d.).
Twenty-First Century Learning
January 12, 2014