Research Boot Camp

District 70 Fall Institute

Warm Up

Recent study of Illinois college students found:
  • Google is the search tool of choice
  • many used the tool poorly
  • when other tools used, expected them to work just like google
Format agnostic (Abram & Luther, 2004) - information is information is information

Session Agenda:
  • Search Strategy - 15 minutes
  • Expoloring the Deep Web - 15 minutes
  • Customizing Search - 15 minutes


Search Strategy

Better Searches = Better Results
Searching is a THINKING activity. The more thoughtful you are about the search, the less time you'll actually have to spend searching. Preparation pays off.

Use your results! Learn new keywords, get leads to other sources, keep learning as you go!

PoweringUp Your Searching
Advance Search Features in Google
MixUp Your Searches using different tools

Try It: Search Games
Kermit the Frog Challenge - keep track of your strategy
Slinky Challenge - keep track of your strategy
Other Search Challenges can be found here.

Use Stepping Stones for Research
Wikipedia is not EVIL. Read for background knowledge, build keywords, and USE the references and links to get deep into the original sources.
Check out the article on Pluto as an example of the rich reference materials available.

Going off the Deep End: Welcome to the Invisible Web

Deep or invisible web is content not available through search engine results.
What's in the deep web?
  • contents of databases
  • dynamically generated content - example a search on the Library of Congress website
  • materials that are private or password protected

Cook Library Resources - Database page

Customize the Web

Create Your Own Custom Search

Search Alert
RSS Feeds - Let the Info Come to You

Google Scholar - preferences

Cool Down

Questions & Comments

Works Cited
Abram, Stephen, and Judy Luther. "Born with the Chip." Library Journal. 129.8 (2004): 34-37. Print.
Cuts, Matt. "How Search Works." Google. YouTube. 4 Mar. 2010. Web. 6 Oct. 2011.>
jdizzle. Robert Preston Chicken Fat. YouTube. 13 April 2008. Web. 6 Oct. 2011 <>
Kolowich, Steve. "What Students Don't Know." Inside Higher Ed. 22 Aug. 2001. Web. 6 Oct. 2011. <>
LeFever, Lee. "RSS in Plain English." Common Craft. YouTube. 23 April 2007. Web. 6 Oct. 2011 <>
Vincente, Danard. Search-Engine-Marketing. Flickr. 12 July 2007. Web. 3 Oct. 2011 <>