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Writing 001 (Winek)

Academic Writing

Video: How Should I Search in a Database?

When you search in a database, it's a good idea to use keywords and Boolean Operators (the words AND, OR, & NOT). Learn the basics of Boolean (AND / OR / NOT) and keyword searching. (Length: ~1:25)

Question: How can you decide what keywords will work best in your search?

Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU), Ronald Williams Library, 1:27

Boolean Operators (AND / OR)

Use AND to combine two different ideas. AND narrows your results.


"academic success" AND sleep

"time management" AND grades

"growth mind-set" AND transition AND college

tuition AND admissions AND "college attendance"

Use OR to combine similar concepts.  OR expands your results.


grades OR GPA

study OR learn

college OR university OR "higher education"

self-discipline OR self-control OR "self regulation"

discipline OR determination

Video: Tips & Tips - Phrase Searching

Watch this short video to discover how phrase searching can help you locate relevant sources and narrow your search results. (1:00 from North Carolina State University Libraries).

Phrase Searching

Use "quotation marks" to glue terms together. Use quotation marks around two or more words that you want to appear as a phrase.

"reading skills" will get better, more relevant, results than reading skills


"freshman myth"

"academic experiences"

"college completion"

"attention span"

"general education requirements"