Research always starts with a question. But the success of your research also depends on how you formulate that question. If your topic is too broad or too narrow, you may have trouble finding information when you search. When developing your question/topic, consider the following:
You will get better results in a database, such as CINAHL, by using effective keyword search strategies.
To develop an effective search strategy, you need to:
For example, TRY:
high blood pressure AND hypertension
therapy AND treatment
If you are having trouble thinking of synonyms, check a thesaurus, dictionary, or reference book for ideas.
When 2 or more words are entered in a search box, they must appear within 5 words of one another in the article. Enter words in separate boxes to retrieve a larger selection of articles. Click Add Row to add additional search boxes.
Use Subject headings to locate additional or more specific search terms.
To help you with keyword searching, use the Boolean Operators:
AND, OR, & NOT.
This link to a short video (under 3 minutes) explains how to do this with remarkable results! It is from the John M. Pfau Library, CSUSB.
Below are links to two worksheets that will help you turn your topic into a successful keyword search, using Boolean operators. Use these to search in library databases and even Google!
These other guides, created by Kirkwood librarians, will provide more help in "how to" do a research project .
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