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Help: From the Web

Searching For Websites

There are many ways to search the internet to get good quality information that will be useful for your assignments. This page will give you some internet searching tips and show you a few different search engines. 

Most students head straight to Google when they need to research a topic. The videos below will help you make the most of your Google searches, and they show you how to use Wikipedia wisely.

What is a Search Engine?

A search engine is a web-based tool that enables users to locate information on the World Wide Web.  They use automated sofware (referred to as robots, bots or spiders) that travel along the Web, following links from page to page, site to site. The information gathered is used to create a searchable index of the Web (info from Designhammer).

Google is the most popular search engine but there are many others. You can search Google from the search box below:

Google Web Search

Have a look at Google's Tips & Tricks and Search Help pages to improve the quality of your searches. 

Other search engines include Bing, Yahoo!, and InfoSpaceLet's look at some of our faves below:

How does the internet work?

The video below shows you how the web or internet works.

This can make it easier for you to know where and how to find what you need.

['World Wide Web explained' by CommonCraft]

Wolfram Alpha

Wolfram Alpha brings back the facts. Whether you are looking for demographic information on a country, drug interactions or the solution to a maths problem you will find it using Wolfram Alpha. You can put a search straight into the box above.

You can also find Wolfram Alpha apps for a wide range of subjects:

Specialist Search Sites:

Duck Duck Go

Duck Duck Go doesn't collect personal information or track your history. It aims to get you to good search results with fewer clicks. 

Try it out by entering a search in the box above.

How to Get Good Results From Google

The video above shows you 5 great tips for using Google. These hints will help you save time so have a look.

 

['Search Tips for Google" by Curtin University]

 

Web Search Strategies

This simple video above explains how to design a good search strategy so you can find what you need on the web.  

['Web Search Strategies' by CommonCraft]

What Alternatives are There to Google?

The video above suggests these alternatives to Google: Sweet Search, InstaGrok, ipl2, JURN, Trove, your state library which is LINC, Morguefile and Vimeo

['Search Tips for Google" by Curtin University]

How to Use Wikipedia Wisely #1

You can get some good sources of information by using Wikipedia wisely. The video above will show you how. The narrator talks fast but he shares some good advice.

 

['Using Wikipedia For Academic Research' by CLIP]

More Info About How to Evaulate Websites

['Credible Websites?' by Hartness Library] 

How to Find Good Quality Info Online

The video above looks at the dangers of writing an assignment that is only based on Google results and Wikipedia. Use Google and Wikipedia as a first step but then use library books, websites recommended by the library on their subject guides and our journal database called OneFile.  

['Why can't I just use Google?' by La Trobe University]

What Happens When You Do a Google Search?

The video above from Google explains in simple terms what happens when you do a Google search. It is quite interesting but remember that Google is not going to point out its own bad points!

['How search works' by Google]

Wikipedia Explained

This video shows you what Wikipedia is and how it works. It is a positive promotion so make sure you watch the videos that give you tips about how to use Wikipedia wisely.

['Wikipedia Explained' by CommonCraft]

How to Use Wikipedia Wisely #2

 

Some people will tell you that Wikipedia is bad, bad, bad BUT it can help you become familiar with new topics. The video above shows you how to do that in a funny way.

 

['Using Wikipedia' by UVicLibraries]