Digital Research Tools
Applications of New Media in Composition
By: A.Lockett, J.Hsu, and S.DiMaggio
About the Graduate Writing Center
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To access this presentation, schedule an appointment, or learn more about our
How do you think new media affects your writing/research?
How do you Query?
Write down what you are researching and why it is important in no
more than THREE sentences. Feel free to focus on the problem, its
significance, or its methods. (5 Minutes)
How should someone search for your research? Which keywords
identify your project? Write down as many as you can, in as many
combinations as you can. (5 Minutes)
Share your writing with the person next to you, and briefly discuss
each other’s projects. As you talk about your projects, expand the set
of keywords that ‘tag’ your research interest.
Quering Tips: The Algorithm
Boolean Logic: Broad/Narrow
"search a phrase": Search a phrase
AND: Both terms must appear in the result
OR: Expands searches
Google Logic: Domain Specificity
Getting the Most from Databases
• Consider how you are thinking about your topic
• Explore databases OUTSIDE your disciplines to expand your
associations about the study
• As you browse scholarly articles, pay attention to recurring terms and
try “tagging” the piece when you are done
• Experiment liberally with search query combinations in various
databases to generate innovative ideas about your subject
•Locate sources (can access with PSU log-in)
•Link to sources being cited (useful for Lit Reviews)
•Observe titles of articles and note how your topic is discussed:
Which terms recur
Which authors recur
What story do these titles tell about both your research topic and
What are the conflicts/events? scenes? characters? resolutions?
Query for Trends
The Corpora (BYU/Google Books)
Search for trends in key words featured in books for the past 100
years or so.
Google News: Customizable
Another great way to find trends in current events. Search realtime. Customize by key words. Modify dates.
Google It…In many many ways…
Experiment with a host of Google Applications!
Getting the Most from Databases
• Oxford English Dictionary
• Gale Virtual Reference Library
• Access News WorldBank
• Data and Statistics
• Research Guide for International Statistics and Data
• Historical Newspapers
• American Newspapers and Periodicals from the 17th to 20th centuries
• Scientific Research
• Science Direct
• Pub Med
• Multidisciplinary Databases
• Academic Search Complete
• Open Access Guide
Writing in the Cloud
Do you have additional recommendations for us?
Designing Digital Projects
Dawn Childress is a Digital Humanities Librarian at the Pattee/Paterno
- For examples of projects
- For meet-up schedule
Also: PSU is FULL of resources!
We have almost 300 centers, institutes, and labs
- Geography Department
- Population Research Institute: http://www.pop.psu.edu/
Your Digital Persona
A Wiki of Writing Resources
This public wiki links to numerous research and writing
applications. Please feel free to join this workspace to add more
Survey and Questions
Please take a few minutes to fill out our survey!
If time permits, our consultants will be happy to stick around give
you one-on-one assistance!
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Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for attending our Workshop!!!!!