When you’re searching the library databases, it’s more effective to use keywords instead of entering your whole research question. It’s a good idea to take out all the extra words for your topic and narrow it down to just the key concepts, because the databases often have trouble parsing extra words. To come up with keywords, focus in on what the key concepts of your research topic are.
If you’re searching a database with one search box, you can put AND between each of your keywords to keep track of them. If the database has more than one search box, you can put one term in each box to make it easy to switch them up and experiment.
If you're having trouble finding articles on your topic, try some of these tips:
If you’re not finding enough articles on your topic, you might want to make your topic a little bit more broad. Similarly, if you see too many results (or results on too many subtopics), you may want to narrow your topic down. Here are some examples of how to do that:
Narrowing your topic:
Broadening your topic: