Monday, May 16, 2005

I've got a question...where do I search?

Has this happened to you?

You have a question, go to your favorite database and complete your search but the results surprise you - maybe they're too general or they don't seem to address what you think should be the key issues surrounding the topic or too few show up although you know that this is a hot topic.

Choosing the 'right' place to search for information is sometimes difficult. How do you know which database or databases are the most appropriate for the topic?

Consider the scope of your question. For example, if my question was "What are effective interventions for children exposed to violence?", then I'd be thinking about what disciplines would be wrestling with this topic. Here's where I would consider looking for information: psychiatry/psychology, medicine/health, social sciences, religion (faith-based interventions), criminal justice/law.

Consider the scope of the database. Here's where you need discover what subjects/topics that the database covers. And the best way to do that is to look at information pages describing the details about the database. At our library, check out the databse information page by going to the All Major Resources A-Z and clicking on the name of the database.

Match your question to the appropriate database(s)!


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