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PSYC 300: Life-Span Developmental Psychology

Research Guide for PSYC 300

Access Library Resources Online

Trying to access library resources online? Follow the instructions on the Online Access to Library Resources page to access library databases, articles, and ebooks, both on-campus and off-campus.

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Search FAQs

1. How do I search for my topic?

  • Identify the keywords of your topic and use those as your search words. 
  • Each article has tags assigned to it, words or shorts phrases that make each article searchable
    • You want your search words to match those tags 
    • Words like impactfactors, effects, or effective are not used as tags
  • Example topic: What factors affect the identity development of LGBT teenagers?
  • Search: identity development lgbt teenagers
    • teen* searches for teen, teens, teenager, and teenagers
  • If you've chosen a comparison topic, you probably won't be able to find article that cover both of the topics you're comparing, for example comparing daycares to at-home parenting
    • Do separate searches for each topic, i.e. a separate search for daycare and and a separate search for at-home parenting
    • You will make the connections between articles in order to make pro and con comparisons, for example by finding an effect or impact that interests you in your articles about daycare and your articles about at-home parenting and comparing findings

2. How do I focus the search hits to meet my assignment requirements?

  •  Use Refine Your Search options to focus your search hits:
    • Click on Peer Review 
    • Click on Journal article under Content Type
  • Scroll the Publication Date bar to a recent year to focus your search hits to current research
  • When you find an article that you like and want to use, click on the Cited By number beside Web of Science to open a list of articles that have cited that article

3. I have too many irrelevant search hits. How do I focus them?

  • When you find an article that looks interesting, look at its assigned tags (subjects) 
    • Add any relevant tags to your search
    • This will also help you develop your research questions and search for books and articles for them 

4. How do I know my search words match the tags assigned to articles about my research question?

  • As you scroll through the search hits, look at the Subjects (tags) assigned to the relevant articles you find, and see if they match your search words 
  • Subjects (tags) also help you identify the specific issues around your topic so you can give it direction and develop it into a focused research question

5. I can't find anything on my research question. What do I do?

  • There may not be research tying your main ideas together yet.
    • Try searching for your main ideas separately and linking their findings together
  • If you've found one article that's relevant for your topic:
    • Click on the Cited By number beside Web of Science to open a list of articles that have cited that article
    • Look through the sources in its References list to see if any of them are also relevant to your research
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