#EngTips: Effective Internet searching

We use the internet to search for something quite frequently. I bet some of you found this website from search engines too. It’s important to know the effective way to perform a search so that you don’t waste too much time sorting the results to find what you’re really looking for. So, I hope these tips would be useful for you.

  1. When possible use unique, specific terms. Carefully choose three or more keywords to retrieve more specific result. For example, English dictionary windows 8 can return more specific result than dictionary software as the search query.
  2. Use quotation marks for exact phrases. For example, searching for lunar eclipse using quotation marks (“lunar eclipse”) will return only the phrase in the exact order, thus excluding pages that contain only “lunar” or “eclipse” that aren’t exactly about lunar eclipse.
  3. Exclude articles (a, the), pronouns (it, they), conjunctions (and, or) or prepositions (to, from) when they aren’t important.
  4. Avoid redundant terms.Examples of artificial intelligence we are using in daily life” can be reduced to “example artificial intelligence daily life.” Another example: “wish vs hope” can return more relevant results than “the difference between wish and hope.”
  5. Use more than one search engines when necessary, like when you need to find as many resources as possible. For instance, I used library directories, Google scholar as well as Google search to find research papers for my thesis topic.
  6. If you can’t find what you’re looking for in the first 20 result, go no further. Reformulate your search using different keyword, or…
  7. Use advanced search to refine your search results. Advanced search tools are really useful and usually not that hard to get used to.
  8. Check the help page of the search engine. They usually have unique tips on how to perform effective search using their search tools.

 

Compiled and written by @Fafafin for @EnglishTips4U on Thursday, October 6, 2016

 

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^MQ

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4 responses to “#EngTips: Effective Internet searching

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