Search Google to locate information on the web!
Refine your searches and get the best results using these Google Search strategies. See example search on the next tab.
Exact Phrase Search with Quotation Marks:
Excluded Words with a Minus Sign:
~ Similar Words with a Tilde Character:
OR Multiple Words using OR:
Numerical Ranges with an Ellipsis:
For more information about search strategies, visit the Preparing to Search LibGuide.
In this example, we’ve used quotation marks to search for teacher self efficacy scale as an exact phrase. While we have over 37,000 results, without the quotation marks, we would receive 26.4 MILLION results.
Use these modifiers and commands in your Google search to refine your search and obtain targeted results. See example search on the next tab.
Allintitle: limit keywords to a webpage's title
Define: command to find meanings
Filetype: command to search specific file formats
Link: command to search linked pages
Related: command to search related websites
Site: command to search specific sites
In this example, we’ve used quotation marks to search for teacher self efficacy scale as an exact phrase. Additionally, we have limited our results to just those coming from .edu websites. In this way, we eliminate the commercial websites and are more likely to encounter scholarly content.
Find Similar Sites on Google
During a search, you may come across a webpage that provides useful information. If the option is available for the resulting webpage, you can find similar websites by clicking on the dropdown arrow and selecting Similar as shown in the example below:
You may also use the command related: to search for similar websites for a specific web source. The below example displays related webpages to the National Institutes of Health (nih.gov):
Drafting your list of keyword terms is an important step as you seek information. Keep these points in mind as you draft your keyword search strategy:
For more information, visit the Keyword Searching LibGuide page.
What is a Primary Source?
Primary resources contain first-hand information, meaning that you are reading the author’s own account on a specific topic or event that s/he participated in. Examples of primary resources include scholarly research articles, books, and diaries. Primary sources such as research articles often do not explain terminology and theoretical principles in detail. Thus, readers of primary scholarly research should have a foundational knowledge of the subject area. Use primary resources to obtain a first-hand account of an actual event and identify original research done in a field. For many of your papers, the use of primary resources will be a requirement.
Examples of a primary source are:
For an overview of primary sources, please see the Primary and Secondary Resources LibGuide.
How to Google for Primary Sources
Add these primary source search terms to your topical search terms to more easily find trusted, credible primary sources online from cultural heritage or educational organizations.
|"digital exhibit"||"special collections"||manuscripts||curriculum|
|"digital collection"||library||records||"lesson plans"|
|"primary sources"||museum||collection||"learning object"|
The example below shows a Google search for primary sources on women's history.
You can also try format-specific search terms such as the following:
|"account ledgers"||invitations||photographs (1850s+)|
|"archival footage"||"legal records"||posters|
|audio (1870s+)||legislation||"press releases"|
|film / video (1890s+)||newspapers||telegraphs|
|"financial records"||"oral histories"||treaties|
The example below shows a Google search for speeches by Dr. Martin Luther King that do NOT come from .com websites.
Source Credit: How to Google for Primary Sources by Robin M. Katz, January 2021
There is also an Advanced Search feature accessible from the Google search results screen, located under Settings. The Advanced search screen offers more options for search terms, as well as ways to narrow your search by: Language, Region, Last Update, Site or domain, File type, Usage rights.