Whether for papers, homework, exams, or your favourite hobby – all the important facts are just a few clicks away on the Internet if you know how to search. To help you find the right and most important information quickly, we’ve put together some tips for successful Internet research.
YOUR INTERNET RESEARCH – ASK YOURSELF, WHAT IS YOUR AIM
What is the name of Prince Harry’s baby? What should you know about live betting in Kenya to start with in-place betting? Every day, Google is asked 3.5 billion times, statistically speaking, and answers every question, no matter how absurd. But internet research is not only essential for finding entertaining information.
Presentations, technical papers, or other extensive school assignments also begin with research on the Internet. The first question you should ask yourself is: what exactly are you looking for? What is your topic and what information do you need?
The more clearly you define your topic in advance, the narrower your focus, the easier your Internet research will be. Therefore, read the assignment for the term paper or your presentation carefully and then think about what you want to search for on the Internet.
FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH YOUR TOPIC
And what to do next if you have already clearly defined the scope of your Internet research and you know what you want to look for? Then you should now get an overview. Take a textbook or an (online) encyclopaedia. There you will find the most important terms and facts with which you can start your Internet research. Search the Internet for the individual terms and familiarize yourself step by step with the topic, discover special features and interesting facts about it.
CHOOSING RIGHT KEYWORDS
The most important tool in Internet research is a search engine, for example, Google or Yahoo. When using search engines, choosing the right searching keywords is very important for your success. Full question phrases are not recommended. Use concise keywords that best describe your topic.
Vary between singular and plural, note different spellings, and test different combinations of search terms. Search queries with and, or and not being helpful. This way you can search for multiple or alternative terms and exclude uninteresting ones.
The success of your search also depends on how you enter the keywords in the search box. It is better to enter single words than whole sentences. The order of the words also plays a role. The algorithms work so complexly that other word forms related to the search word “run” in the background appear in the hit lists.
And in most cases, you will receive suggestions for additional terms or combinations other than your own that will help you even while you are still typing in the search field
WHERE DID YOU FIND THAT AGAIN MAKE BOOKMARKS
You’ve read an exciting article, but can’t find it anymore? In a book, you would have marked the page with a bookmark. Why not do the same when you’re researching online? Every browser has this function. In many, you bookmark a page by clicking on an asterisk to the right of the URL line. It’s good to name these bookmarks in an easy-to-understand way and organize them into folders. This way you can create your own online source collection.
GET DIFFERENT POINTS OF VIEW ACCORDING TO YOUR TOPIC
If you’ve found a good article that covers the topic you’re looking for in detail, you’re in for a treat. But the work doesn’t stop there. One source alone is not enough. Look for other texts that confirm the information. This way you can be sure that you have researched the correct facts.
DO A QUALITY CHECK
When you have collected enough sources, you should critically examine them and do a quality check. Here’s what you need to look for:
- Is the information relevant to your topic?
- Is the information clear and understandable?
- Are the information and facts presented objectively?
- Does the article have a recognizable author?
- Is the structure of the text clear and without noticeable spelling errors?
- Does the author refer to verifiable facts and reputable sources?
THINK ABOUT UP-TO-DATE INFORMATION ON YOUR TOPIC
If you need up-to-date information on a topic, you can for example use the Twitter accounts of the daily newspapers. It would be also very helpful to you to allow push notifications of matching online journals. This way, you receive notifications when new articles appear or something particularly important happens. This way, you always stay up to date and find out when something changes in your subject area.
USE THE SPECIAL SEARCH ENGINES
To search for very specific specialized topics, you should use speciality search engines. These directories are often hand-picked and are not (only) generated by “software automats”. These are the science search engines developed by universities. Google News for news or Google Scholar for literature are also such special services and circle the desired target for you in advance.