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EDUC 200 Educational Psychology Class Guide

General Information

For your Multimodal Project, you'll need to find articles, book chapters, webpages, etc. to back up your research. The best kind of citation is a peer-reviewed article. This is because of the process that a peer-reviewed article has to go through in order to be published. For more information on peer-reviewed articles, click here.

To find these kinds of resources, visit library databases. Recommended databases for this course are listed below. To see all databases that the library subscribes to, click here.

Take Time to Map Out Your Topic and Keywords

Before you begin searching, make sure that you have a good idea of what you should be searching. Think about what your topic is and come up with topics and keywords that might make sense for your search.

      An Example:

      Too broad: World War II

      Too narrow: Survival rate of green-eyed Canadian soldiers during World War II battles on even days of the month.

      Just right: How underground newspapers aided the French Resistance during World War II

 

Keywords translate your topic into search terms that you can use in the databases or online. You don't want to type in your entire topic sentence. Instead pull out the key terms. Also, don't forget about synonyms that could be use to describe your topic.

   An Example:

      Topic Sentence: Climate change is effecting the survival rate of Emperor penguin chick born in the wild.

            Keywords: climate change, global warming, penguins, Emperor penguins, survival, birth rate, chicks, eggs

Your keywords and your topic are not set in stone. You might find as you research that either of them may change based on what you find. It's all part of the research process!

Search Tips

Look for ways to limit your results:

  • Unlike Google, you are not limited to just a keyword search. In most databases you can narrow down your results by subject area, type of material, or date published. Date published is especially important in an area like health/exercise science where information can become dated very quickly.
  • Explore the subject or thesaurus terms that are used by most databases. Since these are standardized, they allow you to find all the relevant information on a particular subject and weed out a lot of false hits.  This is especially helpful for databases pertaining to the sciences.
  • Remember to use Boolean Operators to help make your search more efficient:
    • AND will produce results that contain BOTH terms (e.g. birds AND bees)
    • OR generates results that contain EITHER term (e.g. dogs OR canines)
    • NOT results will include the first terms, but not the second (cats NOT musical)
  • Quotation marks will isolate that phrase: "natural selection" lists results containing only that specific phrase, but results for natural selection would contain natural AND selection somewhere, not necessarily side by side.

For more advanced search techniques, visit this guide.

Once you have an idea of what your keywords should be, decide on the database you should use. Recommended databases for this class are below.

Relevant Databases

General/Multidisciplinary Databases

Education Databases

Psychology Databases