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Frederick A. Marcotte Library for Students

A landing page to learn more about library resources available to Clermont College students.

Where to Search

Frequently Used Resources:

Crafting Searches

To make your searches more effective, try these methods:

  • Make a list of related terms
  • Use Boolean Operators to include or exclude terms
  • Limit the date range, if this option is available
  • Search for full-text only, if this option is available
  • Use quotation marks if you are searching for a phrase, such as "artificial intelligence" or "insurance billing"
  • Limit to peer reviewed articles, if your assignment requires it
  • Try searching by subject

Boolean Operators

Boolean Operators (AND, OR, NOT) can make your searching more efficient.They can help narrow your search (such as AND), broaden (such as OR), or make your search more exact (such as “”). Let's think of as in ordering a pizza. You want a pizza...

  • with green pepper AND onion. Both toppings will be on your pizza (or in your search results).
  • with green pepper OR onion. Either topping will be on your pizza (or in your search results).
  • with green pepper NOT onion. They are picking the peppers off your pizza (or in your search results).
  • from Papa John's Pizza. You will only find Papa John's Pizza rather than Pizza Hut on Papa Street.

Evaluate Sources

Never take information at face value or assume a source is a "good" one just because it came from the library.  Instead, think about what the source adds to your understanding of your topic, how it might be used in your paper, and what kind of expertise the author brings to the discussion. 

Some things to consider:

  1. Is the information relevant to my work?
  2. What is the main argument of the work? What evidence supports that argument?
  3. Is the information still up to date?
  4. Does the author have the appropriate expertise?
  5. Who is the intended audience of the work?
  6. How much does the source help you learn?
  7. What do other sources tell you about the author, publisher, and topic?
  8. How can you use this source in your research?

For more tips watch the video below:

Research Terms

When doing research, you may come across some unfamiliar words.  Here is a list of common research terms.

Term Definition
Abstract An abstract is a short summary of a document. Abstracts are useful because they allow you to quickly determine if a document fits your topic.
Citation The citation provides the bibliographic information for a source. It lets the reader know who is responsible for creating a source you reference in your project, when it was created, and gives the reader all the information needed to retrieve that source for further examination.
Database An organized collection of stored data which is usually searchable by keywords, subject, topic, language, and/or date. The library subscribes to a range of databases that relate directly to courses offered at UC.

DOI stands for Digital Object Identifier.  A DOI is a string of letters and numbers used to identify an electronic document. While the web address (URL) where a work is located may change, the DOI remains the same.

Full-Text This means the whole document is available online.
Journal A publication, produced periodically on a schedule, that provides research articles in a particular field of study. Journal articles report on primary research and offer insight and evaluation of the results.
Keyword Search A key word search looks for a particular word or words within a document.  The advantage of key word searching is that it is quick.  The disadvantage is it often produces results unrelated to your topic, and misses those that use a different term.
Peer-Reviewed Peer-reviewed resources have been examined by a panel of experts. Peer-reviewed resources are also scholarly documents.
Primary Source Primary sources are records that provide first-hand testimony or evidence of an event, action, topic, or time period. Primary sources can vary depending on the subject.
Scholarly A scholarly resource is written by an expert in his or her field. A scholarly resource is not always peer-reviewed.
Subject Search Libraries and databases categorize items by subject. By searching by subject, you get results that are closely related and it is more efficient than keyword searching.
Secondary Source Secondary sources put primary sources in context. They summarize, interpret, analyze, or comment on  information found in primary sources.


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