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FNDS 1309: Let's Talk About Talk!

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How to Search in Mardigian Search

Search for Information in Our General Mardigian Search

These tips are specific for our general Mardigian Search, however, you can apply these same keyword search strategies to anywhere you do research. In the Mardigian search box above, type in keywords to get you started.

Keyword Searches

  • Keywords are the important themes and words you're interested in researching
  • Try getting inspiration from tags on your initial search results. These are words or phrases that the author/publisher/editor have determined to be major themes or concepts in the piece. Search algorithms match your initial keyword searches with these tags.
  • Don't use filler words like effect, impact, role, or connection as these will muck up the search.
  • You may have to look for synonyms or variations to your original keyword search.
  • For example, if you're doing research question is "Why do bilinguals codeswitch?", your keywords to start with are bilinguals and codeswitch rather than typing in your whole research question.

More Specific Search and ​Boolean Operators

  • Now the term codeswitch has several different variations: codeswitch, code-switch, and code switch
  • In order to have to look for all the variations I need to use the boolean operator OR and quotation marks. My new search would be [codeswitch OR code-switch OR “code switch”]. Now I will have results for all the variations of the term codeswitch. Boolean Operators include: AND, OR, NOT
  • If I wanted just the spelling for codeswitch and not code switch to appear in my search I would search for [codeswitch NOT "code switch"]. The NOT indicates that I do not want the following phrase of code switch.
  • If I wanted either results for codeswitch and bilinguals I would use the following search [(codeswitch OR code-switch OR “code switch”) AND bilinguals]
  • Note: AND, OR, and NOT need to be capitalized in order for most search engine algorithms to recognize them as boolean operators

Select Content Type

  • Choose what format you'd prefer
    • Examples: Book/eBook, Journal Article, Magazine Article, Streaming Video, Web Resources, ...
  • If you don't have a preference you can always leave all of the results in and continue to narrow down by the suggestions below

​​Filter Your Search Results

  • In Mardigian Search, use Refine Your Search on the left hand side
  • Select Disciplines and Subjects that interest you
    • Example of Disciplines: languages & literature, linguistics, sociolinguistics, psychology, social sciences, sociology & social history, ...
    • Example of Subjects: bilingual education, bilingualism, code switching, code-switching, ...
  • ​Select the publication date you find most useful by moving the yellow slide scale

Refine Your Search

  • Continue to narrow down your results by changing the Discipline and Subjects selected.
  • Change your keyword search as you go. You will find as you do your research that your initial research question may change and become more specific to narrow down your focus. 
  • Play around with it as you go and contact your professor or the library ( if you get stuck or confused.

Scholarly/Peer Reviewed

Throughout your time in college you’ll be asked to write papers where you will need to cite peer reviewed articles. Your professors may ask you to find scholarly, academic, or peer-reviewed articles. These are all synonyms for the peer-review process. This is the process of evaluating scientific, academic, or professional work by others working in the same field with similar credentials. For example, if a psychologist tries to get a paper published in the field of psychology, when they submit to a journal for publication they’re going to put that paper through that peer reviewed process and have others in the field of psychology read through their work for accuracy. When an item is peer reviewed it means it has gone through this rigorous review process of essentially being fact checked by others in the field to make sure that the paper doesn’t have falsified or misleading information.

This peer reviewed process does a lot of the work of checking for accuracy for you and is often viewed as the gold star of information. Watch the video below for more information.

Video created by NC State University Libraries

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