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Rhetoric 306/309

Brainstorming Keywords

Brainstorm Keywords for RHE 306

This video is helpful if you want to see how a librarian walks through our library search tools in order to get familiar with a topic and gather keywords.

*note, this video was created for a topic around disability studies. But the methods laid out are the same as in other topics.

Search Tips

Step 1: Go to library homepage:

Step 2: Type keyword(s) in the simple search box, start with keywords for a broad topic.  

Step 3:  You can choose one of the four options from the drop down menu. The default search (Everything) includes of the resources available from the UT Libraries, books, articles and many more research resources.


Step 4: Browser through the results, look for words that best describe your topic, make notes of these words which can be used later.

Step 5: Use the limiters on the left to narrow down the search results to peer-reviewed articles, scholarly written articles based on research. There are many limiters available, you can apply them according to your research needs.

limit database search results to peer-reviewed journal articles

Newspapers provide entry level articles that you might delve into first for your research.

The default search in Library All-In-One search excludes newspaper results. Newspaper search can be found under "Resource Type" on your search result page. 

Library databases provide access to a wealth of research materials from peer review journals, newspapers, and magazines. The following will demonstrate how to search in Academic Search Complete, a great starter database, which provides a wide array of information on a wide range of topics, and chances are that you will find something useful for your project there.

Step 1. Go to UT libraries database page, find "Academic Search Complete" under Letter A.

Step 2. Go through duo factor authentication and land on Academic Search Complete advanced search page, which is the default.

Step 3. Type in your keywords, separate each set of keywords into different search boxes and connect them using Boolean operators .

database keyword search

Step 4. On result list, you can narrow down your results by using the limiters on the left. There are options for scholarly journals, newspapers, magazines, ect.

limit database search results to peer-reviewed journal articles

Step 5. You can also use some advanced search techniques to broaden your search results, like using keyword synonym and connect them by Boolean operator "OR". 

use keyword synonyms and connect them using boolean operator "OR"


Keyword Tool

Try this keyword tool to brainstorm online and send the results to yourself.

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