Skip to toolbar

Week 2 – Search

Now you have produced a mind map or essay plan, it’s time to look for material to help provide evidence for your assignment. This week we will be focussing on searching for academic material suitable for your essay or assignment using the keywords you've identified.

Where to Search?

There is a whole world of information at the touch of a keyboard but it's not always easy to know WHERE to search and also the best WAYS to search. You need to consider what sort of resources are best for your particular needs. For example: books can be great for background and theories but not always up to date in current research. For that you'd need to consult journals. Google can be great to look for holidays or the latest news stories but not always the best place to find good quality academic information.

This short piece of e-learning may help you to identify the different types of material available so you can decide which are best for you 

Task 1 – Effective essay planning

You've already looked at Step 1: Planning on our '5 steps to essay success'. The next step is to listen and work through Step 2: Search

 Task 2 – Searching

  • Using your keywords from week one, carry out a search using Library Search. If you are not a member of Salford University, you will still be able to search and see any abstracts or table of contents
  • Alternatively, use Google Scholar to look for journal articles. This short video gives a nice overview of how to search effectively
  • Choose one book and one journal article that you feel may be useful for your essay
  • Post your references onto the Facebook group
  • Reflect on what you have learnt about searching. Did you find it easy or difficult? Is there anything in particular you struggle with? Is there anything the NMWriteNow team could help you with?

Dig Deeper

  • Did you notice the CRAP/CRAAP (hehe) method for evaluating sources in the elearning above? Check out this 2min video to find out more
  • You will have noticed the term 'peer review' appear in discussions about academic literature. Want to know more about the peer review process? This little film explains more.