Research Help

Getting one-on-one help; Video tutorials

1) Start your research: finding keywords

This video helps you discover the main keywords on a research topic.

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Start your research: finding keywords

Let's say you've just been given an assignment where you have to use 2 to 3 resources and your topic is computers. Where do you go from here? How do you narrow it down? The first step is to take your topic and develop that into a research question.

When a student comes to the research help desk asking for help on their topic, my first response is, "what more specifically do you want to learn about your topic?" That's because usually, whatever they said to me is way too broad of a topic and it should be narrowed down. This topic can be narrowed by social, political or economic issues. For example, how have video games influenced the e-sports industry?

Another way you can narrow your topic is by looking at a specific, population group (such as children or Indigenous) or location (such as Canada or Ontario). For example, how has online shopping been influenced by mobile technology in Canada? You can even relate your topic to another topic such as, How is artificial intelligence changing education? Notice how each of these questions have a much narrower focus than the big topic of computers. That's what makes good research questions.

So let's pick this as our research question: How is artificial intelligence changing education? Now that we have our manageable research question, let's determine the keywords. Why keywords you may ask? Sometimes I catch students searching the library by typing the whole question or sentence. No. Don't do that. Rather, you need to find the main concepts or ideas in your question. Those keywords can be single words or phrases.

So for our question what would the main concepts be? They are: artificial intelligence and education. By the way since words like: affect, enable, rate, impact, or advantage, describe a relationship between keywords, they should not be considered good keywords to use. Once you have the main keywords for your topic, sometimes you'll need to find additional keywords to use in your search. This will ensure that you find all of the best, most relevant information for your topic. Determining keywords can be one of the hardest steps in the research process. Fortunately, there are many different ways to come up with alternate keywords.

One way is to use a thesaurus to identify alternative terms. Another way is if you have a book on your topic, try skimming the table of contents or read a chapter to identify more keywords that you haven't thought of before. Or quickly glance a website that's on your topic. What terminology do they use? You can also search Google or Wikipedia for ideas but remember that Wikipedia is not considered a credible academic source. But you can certainly use it to brainstorm keywords.

Now that we've got our keywords we can now use those words to search the library for resources.

2) Searching keywords in Page 1+

This video guides you in using Page 1+ with one of the keywords you discovered from the last video.

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Searching keywords in Page 1+

The library has many databases to support your assignments. Most of which can be searched simultaneously from the Page 1+ box located on the library's homepage. You can search for eBooks, streaming video recordings, academic journals, and multiple article databases that we subscribe to.

In the last video, we ended up identifying artificial intelligence and education, as the main keywords which we can now use in Page 1+.

Let's go to the library homepage. One way to get there is by going to You'll find our Page 1+ box. Go ahead and enter: artificial intelligence. Then click search. Within Page 1+ you are able to locate a number of different types of resources as it searches through many of the article databases that support your program. .

Let’s see what eBooks we have available.

On the left hand side under Resource Types, check Books, then click Apply Filters. To limit to only electronic books, check “Available Online” under Availability and Apply Filters. Let's say you're interested in this eBook. To read it, select the database listed under “Full text availability”. Books are great for helping us understand a topic at a broad level.

Let's now try a different limiter. Let's take away the filter for Books and this time checkmark: videos. Now our results include streamed video. Click the “available online” link and then the database listed under “full text availability”. Videos are great for presentations or can be used as a resource.

Alongside Books and videos, let's try to find articles. Take away the checkmark for videos. Articles are found in newspapers, magazines and journals.

Articles are generally more specific and more current. To access the article select the Available online link and then a database name to get to the full text. Finally, if you need peer-reviewed articles, click the checkbox for peer-reviewed journals as well.

3) Using AND & OR in Page 1+

View Using AND & OR in Page 1+ on Youtube


Using AND & OR in Page 1+

Now let's modify our search to include our second keyword -- education. Let's remove any limits we may have had before and then type the second keyword in the next search box. Always put one idea or concept per line and connect them by AND to find more relevant results. Notice Page 1+ automatically has AND by default. Click Search and you'll notice the number of your search results has reduced. These results contain only those items that contain both keywords.

Here's how AND works. The analogy that I like to use is Facebook. Your mutual friends list is a result of an AND operator. You have 'you', your friends, your friend and their friends -- somewhere behind the Facebook code, there is an actual AND operator that looks at both of you and outputs a list of shared friends.

Same thing here -- you have a bunch of articles about artificial intelligence. Over here you have a bunch of articles about education. The AND operator will only output a list of articles that talk about both ideas resulting in more relevant and focused results. If the article does not talk about both, it's discarded.

Now what happens if the perfect article never uses the word education. What are the chances of finding that article? What is a synonym of education? Perhaps College or university. So to widen our net, and to try to capture those articles, we can use the OR operator. So in our second box where we already typed education, add 'OR college where the word OR is in capital letters. Then click Search. Our results have increased, but are still relevant to our topic.

Here's how OR works. Page 1+ examines the article to see if talks about education. If it does, it's part of the list of results. If it doesn't, Page 1+ then tests to see if it talks about college. If it does, it's part of the list of results. Which means, if the article does not contain either of those concepts, it's discarded. These results will then be further refined since they need to include 'artificial intelligence' as well.

Now that we have a list of relevant results, the next step, is evaluating whether or not these articles are useful and relevant for our assignment.

4) Evaluating resources

This video guides helps you evaluate whether your books and articles meet your assignment requirements.

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Evaluating resources

Let's say you have to write a research paper using at least one book and one scholarly article published within the last five years on the topic of "How is artificial intelligence changing education?" Let's imagine you also searched Page 1 + using the keywords "artificial intelligence" and "education" and you found two potentially good resources.

The first one is this electronic book "The fourth education revolution: Will artificial intelligence liberate or infantilize humanity". To evaluate whether or not it's good for your topic, ask yourself the following five questions.

So one, does the source include my keywords in the title and subject headings? We can see that education and artificial intelligence show up in the title for the book. Let's scroll down and look at the subject headings and we only see artificial intelligence. We don't see education. That's okay for now - we're not going to be worried at this point because we have other questions to answer.

Question 2 - is the source published in the required timeframe? We can see that this book was published in 2020 so that's within the last 5 years and that's good.

Question 3 - does the type of my resource meet the assignment requirements? Is a scholarly? Let's see if we can figure out if this item is a scholarly book. I'm going to scroll down to the item details and I can see that the publisher is the University of Buckingham Press. Usually a university press is considered a scholarly publisher. So the answer to that question is yes.

Question 4 - does the abstract or table of contents reflect what I need to answer my research question? So the description for this book isn't very helpful so I'm going to go to the actual book. I'm going to link out and I'm going to see a larger description here and as I scroll down I'm also going to see the table of contents.

So I can see that there are definitely ones that are talking about education specifically education 4.0. And if I scroll up and look at the description, here we are talking about the role of artificial intelligence and its impact on education.

So I think that is a good description. The final question to ask is, is the source useful for my assignment? Based on all of the information, I think that this will be a good source that we can use. Notice that what we are doing is a lot of critical thinking and reviewing the information to determine whether or not we want to use the resource.

Now here's the second resource to evaluate. It is identified as an article. And now the first thing I want to look, are the words "artificial intelligence" and "education" listed in the title and in the subjects.

Artificial intelligence is certainly in the title of the article. I'm going to scroll down to the subjects and here I can see "college students", I can see "educational technology", "higher education" - so it's kind of there.

Looking at when it was published - 2021 - that's definitely within the five-year time span so the answer to that question is yes. Is this a scholarly article? Well we can see that it has identified that the journal is peer reviewed which typically identifies scholarly.

And when we look at the source "International Journal of educational technology in higher education", From the title of the journal and the fact that it is a journal, we can typically say that yes, this is a scholarly resource.

Next we need to look at the description for this article to see whether or not it will support the research question. We can look through here, we can say that AI offers effective support for online learning and teaching. What else can we find in here?

We've got impact on student satisfaction and learning outcomes. Is there anything else in here that might identify that it's useful. Contributions of the study include the design of AI system storyboards that positively support learner instructor interaction capturing students and instructors concerns etc.

Based on that, the description seems to be describing some of the impacts that artificial intelligence can have in a particular circumstance of education. So given all of the answers to my questions I think I can potentially use this source as well.

Select a database to link to the full text. If you decide to use it, you can e-mail or print. And remember to cite your article. This will be covered in the next video.

5) Citing Tools and APA Citing Guide.

This video teaches you a few tools for citing and an overview of APA Citing guide.

View Citing Tools and APA Citing Guide. on Youtube


Citing Tools and APA Citing Guide.

Let's say you found an article in your search that you now want to use

Here's an example. First click on the title to get to the detailed record. Find the citation icon and click on that to generate an APA 7th citation. You can copy this citation and put it into your document for your reference list entry

But as it reminds you, you must always check any citation for accuracy before including them in your work. Citations generated from databases or any citation generator do not always fully complete a reference and you need to verify that it matches the APA 7th rules and formatting. To access the full text of the article, move down the page and select one of the databases to find the full text

And select that database. Your article will open in a new tab and you have some options at this point.

If you see a printer inside the document itself you can now print this item.

If you find something that identifies as download, this will allow you to save the article to your computer or your USB. Look for an email option - a little envelope - and you can select that and enter in your email and it will usually attach the PDF of the document as well as an APA 7th citation. Each database vendor may have a slightly different way of offering those options but you should still be able to find ways to save, to print, and to email yourself the article from any one of our databases. For more help with APA, go to the library home page and find the APA icon.

Select that and you'll be taken to our APA 7th citation guide. Here you can find information on formatting your paper, what makes a reference list entry, and how to do in-text citations. Do you have an article from a journal that you need to cite?.

That's considered a textual work. Selecting textual work will give you several different options of what's included.

And you can find Journal examples of citations when you go. Or maybe you have a website or social media post that you're trying to reference. What is online media provides examples in this category. Or you may have a video that you want to reference. What is audio visual media talks about all of the elements in an audio-visual reference list entry. Need more assistance with APA? On the library website under Learning Services select The Writing Centre.

Here you can find that there are APA Workshop screencasts that go into what is APA, how to format your title page and your paper, how to complete references, and in-text citations.

6) Accessing Page 1+ and Other Library Resources

This video shows you the required steps in order to access library databases from home.

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Accessing Page 1+ from home

Accessing resources, whether you’re at home or on campus, requires you to sign in to the databases.

Let's say you're using Page 1+ . In order to see the full text of an article or eBook, or to view a streaming video, you need to sign in. Look for the sign in option in the top right corner of Page 1+ or the yellow bar below the search boxes. When you see the login screen, select Georgian students and staff. You will see this login screen where you'll be prompted to enter your Georgian account information. This is the same account that you use to access other college systems like Blackboard or the student portal.

When you access other library databases, you will be prompted with the same Georgian login box.

Finally, we're here to help you so just ask. Feel free to visit us at the research help desk in the library, call us or email us or use our virtual reference chat or text service called askON. askON is a service where colleges from Ontario like Georgian, Seneca and Centennial are all on there and since we pretty much use all the same databases we can all help you find your books, articles and other resources that you need for your next assignment.