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Business Guide

Library Tutorials

Improving Your Results

How can I improve my search?

If you got too few results try one or more of these tips:

  • Use an OR with synonyms to broaden your search

  • Consult a thesaurus or index for more search terms

  • Reduce the number of concepts

  • Use more general terms

  • Use truncation to get variations or alternate spellings of your term

  • Use the broadest search possible (usually Keywords in most databases)

  • Check your spelling

  • Check to see if you used AND and OR properly

  • Check to see if you are using the best database for your topic

If you get too many results try one or more of these tips:

  • Use an AND to narrow your search

  • Use more precise terms

  • Use subject headings instead of Keywords

  • Consult a thesaurus or index for more narrower terms

  • Remove truncation

  • Search in a specific field, such as the Subject or Title field, instead of searching Keywords

  • Use limits such as language, years or document type.

Primary and Secondary Sources

Scholarly vs. Popular Resources

Keyword Searching

Subject Term Searching

Use RADAR to Evaluate Sources

Use the criteria RADAR to evaluate sources. Ask yourself the questions associated with each area of Relevance, Authority, Date, Appearance and Reason. Using the criteria will help you determine if the source you have found is suitable for your research needs.

Use RADAR criteria to evaluate sources: Relevance, Authority, Date, Appearance, Reason

Information and graphics used for RADAR were adapted from
Jane Mandalios (2013). RADAR: An approach for helping students evaluate 
Internet sources. And from Western Libraries of Western University.