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EDU 6173 Applied Inquiry, Teaching, and Assessment Methods: Math and Science IV: Articles

Core Education Databases

Other databases and search engines

Keywords vs. Subject Terms

For effective searching it is important to understand the difference between Keyword searching and Subject Term searching in databases.

  • Keyword searching asks the search engine to look for every article that has the keywords in it, so an article may, or may not, be on the subject you are interested in researching.
  • Controlled Vocabulary searching (using Descriptors or Subjects) asks the search engine to look for every article that is related to the concept represented by the Controlled Vocabulary you are using.

Steps for effective/focused searching in EDUCATION SOURCE

Use the EDUCATION SOURCE database to find articles.

Step 1. Search by typing a few unique keywords into the first search box. For example, student engagement

Step 2. On the results page, click on the Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) on the left under Limit To.

Step 3. Under Source Types, click the Academic Journals box.

4. Examine the list of Subject Terms (concept term assigned to articles by people who read them) to see if there is one representing your concept. Click on Show More link to select more than 1 subject term at a time.

5. Add another keyword. Make sure you re-select Academic Journals and the germane subject term in the left navigation area.

6. Examine the list of articles and read abstracts (click the title of an article) of ones that seem germane to your area of reseach.

VIDEOS on Finding quality articles in databases @ 7 minutes each

Learning outcomes: by the end of these 2 screencasts, you will:

  • know how to find education focused subject guides
  • apply database search strategies modeled to:
    • narrow your search
    • perform concept searches versus keyword searches
    • search in a more sophisticated manner
    • be able to identify quality academic articles
    • know the steps to finding the full text of an article