Research Support


Search Tips

  1. Consider the types of sources that you need for your research: 
    • Do you need primary or secondary sources?
    • Do you need books or journal articles? Popular publications for a general audience or scholarly resources for academics and professionals? All of the above?
    • Do you need the most recent information available or historical information? 
  2. Brainstorm words, synonyms, alternative spellings, and jargon that could be search keywords to describe your topic. For example: self-driving car, driverless car, autonomous vehicle, etc.  
  3. Only use important topic terms in your search. Example words that ineffectively limit your search: effects, causes, pros and cons, increase, decrease. They're not worth typing. 
  4. To improve your search results, enclose phrases in "quotation marks." For example: "British Columbia" or "climate change". 
  5. To find variant endings for a word, use the * asterisk (truncation symbol). For example: parent* finds parents, parenting, parenthood, parenteral. 
  6. Many items have direct links to get the full text online. For those that don't, use Get It! to determine if we provide full text online or in print.