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Chemistry Research Guide: Research Tips

This guide will help you find scholarly resources for researching a topic in your Chemistry courses

Search Protocols

    • Start with a specific topic & broaden or narrow as necessary
    • Use different words/synonyms to describe your topic (different finding tools may use different words/phrases to describe your topic)
    • Keep a list of keywords and phrases used in each database. When possible, print a copy of your search history from each database
    • Check the database thesaurus or subject terms to find the terms peculiar to that database
    • Search by keyword
    • Use quotation marks " " for a specific phrase: "literature review"
    • Truncate your search term (famil* finds family, families, familial)
    • Use Boolean operators (AND, OR) to combine concepts
    • Limit sources by format and material type
    • Use subjects assigned to one source to find other sources
    • Use the references at the end of an article to find other articles
    • Use the term “Literature Reviews” combined with your topic
    • Export the bliographic information for your resources to RefWorks
    • Keep a list of the databases you search. Use the Research Log below.

Research Log