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UGS 302: Participatory Democracy - Wilson

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Find Articles on a Topic

For this assignment, you might need several types of sources:

Source Type Start Here

Background and Overviews

Useful for picking a topic and brainstorming keywords

For controversial issues, the reports in CQ researcher are a useful starting place. These reports are not peer reviewed scholarly sources.

See other databases below. 

Scholarly Articles

*required for your assignment*

Library Databases - the main library search bar advanced search is a good place to start. More recommendations below.

Journalism/News Google or the UT Libraries NexisUni database. Make sure to evaluate unfamiliar publications. 

Searching databases is different than searching Google. Distil what you're looking for into a few key terms or phrases, rather than whole sentences. 

  1. Is the academic achievement of immigrant students impacted by national policy debates on immigration?)
  2. For each main concept, brainstorm a few synonyms and related terms (broader or narrower) that get at that concept:
    • Key Concepts 

      immigrant students academic achievement policy debates
      Related Terms

      undocumented students (more specific)

      immigrants

       

       

      learning

      academic performance

      achievement (more general)

      success

      academic success

      public debate

      policy ideas

      policy proposals

      attitudes (more general/related)

      negative attitudes

      positive attitudes 

  3. Combine key terms using AND and OR:​​
    • AND narrows your search by looking for articles with all of the words (your two or three key concepts should be connected with AND, because you need all of them represented in useful articles). 
    • OR broadens your search by looking for articles with any of the words (synonyms and related terms should be separated by OR - they get at the same key concepts, so any of them are useful).
  4. Try different combinations of your keywords to get better results as you search.

Databases and Web Resources for your Class

Background and overviews

Scholarly Articles (mostly)

News/Journalism

Google Search Tips:

  • Search only a specific site (ex: nih.gov) or domain (ex: .edu or .gov) by typing in your search followed by site:.org, site:.gov (ex: HIV/AIDS prevention site:nih.gov)
  • Search for an exact phrase by putting your search terms in quotation marks (ex: “over the counter”)

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What are databases?

This video, from RMIT University, explains what a database is...

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