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Wellesley College Research Guides

CS/MAS 366: Advanced Projects in Interactive Media

1. What feels challenging about research? What strategies will you share?

3. Search in a database

Search Tips:

When searching in a database, spelling matters! 

  • Unlike search engines, a database will not correct your typos and spelling mistakes. 

  • If you get zero results, first check that you spelled your keywords correctly.

Use quotation marks for phrase searching

  • If you are searching for multiple words or a phrase, like human computing, put those words within a set of quotation marks in the search box. 

  • If you search human computing, instead of "human computing" most databases will search human and computing as separate keywords

Use truncation to search for various endings

  • aka “wildcards” - often a * at the end of a word (check the database)

  • Use in place of letters - comput* for computer, computing, computational

Other factors:

  • Plural and singular nouns usually do not matter. 

  • Capitalization usually does not matter. 

  • Spaces between letters or words might matter. 

  • Especially in acronyms or the names of medication or viruses or molecules or organisms

  • Bowerbird vs “Bower Bird” both are valid terms and return results in databases

Literature Review

4. Complete a literature review spreadsheet

5. Literature organization spreadsheet template