Reviewing And Refining
Your Search
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
Reviewing And Refining
Your Search
• When you are new to literature searching
it’s easy to generate large numbers of
irrel...
Refine and Sort
 Refine (narrow) your results by:
 searching within results
 limiting to subject areas
 limiting by pu...
Filters and Limiters
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
Use these to reduce scope of search, and
there...
Refine Results
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
• In several databases (e.g. Web of Science)
search ...
Refine Results
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
• Refine results examples from Web of Science
What to do if you only get
a few results?
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
 Check your spelling
 U...
What to do if you only get
a few results?
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
 Snowballing - If you fi...
What to do if you get
too many results?
• Use more search terms linked with AND between
each term
e.g. If you need to find...
What to do if you get
too many results?
• Limit your results by date range.
e.g. if you were looking for the very latest r...
Conclusion
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
Using limiters and filters to make your search
more spec...
Conclusion
RDF
InformationLiteracy
http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
But:
• Think carefully about how you plan to apply
searc...
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Reviewing and refining the results of your literature search

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Reviewing and refining the results of your literature search

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Reviewing and refining the results of your literature search

  1. 1. Reviewing And Refining Your Search RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
  2. 2. Reviewing And Refining Your Search • When you are new to literature searching it’s easy to generate large numbers of irrelevant search results, or to experience finding any relevant results. • Here’s a few simple techniques to use when searching databases that should help you to focus your searching on the most relevant references you need. RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
  3. 3. Refine and Sort  Refine (narrow) your results by:  searching within results  limiting to subject areas  limiting by publication date  limiting by document format  Sort your results by:  relevance  times cited  publication date RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
  4. 4. Filters and Limiters RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/ Use these to reduce scope of search, and therefore number of references, e.g.:  Publication type (e.g. journals)  Publication date (e.g. 2005-)  Language (e.g. English)
  5. 5. Refine Results RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/ • In several databases (e.g. Web of Science) search filters and limiters appear as options displayed on the search results screen. • These include the option to narrow your search by document type, date range, subject, author, year of publication and many more.
  6. 6. Refine Results RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/ • Refine results examples from Web of Science
  7. 7. What to do if you only get a few results? RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/  Check your spelling  Use all possible synonyms  Use a thesaurus or subject dictionary to find alternative terms that describe the subject you are researching  Use broader search terms
  8. 8. What to do if you only get a few results? RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/  Snowballing - If you find one relevant reference you can use it to help you find others.  Check the references and bibliography at the end of the article for related works  Many database provide direct links to related articles displayed in these fields
  9. 9. What to do if you get too many results? • Use more search terms linked with AND between each term e.g. If you need to find references about microbiology especially concerned with tissue samples, type microbiology AND tissue AND samples • Exclude irrelevant subjects by typing NOT before the term you wish to exclude. e.g. If you need to find references about microbiology, but not those about plants, type microbiology NOT plants RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
  10. 10. What to do if you get too many results? • Limit your results by date range. e.g. if you were looking for the very latest research on a particular subject you could type 2012-2013 in the date field of the database search screen. • Limit your search to particular fields e.g. enter your search terms in the title field of the database search screen to increase the relevance of your results. RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/
  11. 11. Conclusion RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/ Using limiters and filters to make your search more specific and focussed is a great method to help you: • Maximise the relevance of your search results • Ensure you are able to easily manage and evaluate the number of hits in your search results
  12. 12. Conclusion RDF InformationLiteracy http://www.library.qmul.ac.uk/ But: • Think carefully about how you plan to apply search filters and limiters • If you apply too many search filters and limiters you can exclude potentially useful references or retrieve no results at all.

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