Build on your key concepts

We are going to continue with the example topic from Module 1 to demonstrate how to use the Information Searching Lifecycle.

In 1.2.4 Mapping your topic we identified the key concepts in the assignment question and any limiters.

In the concept map we also started to brainstorm related concepts and subtopics using what we already know about the topic.

To give yourself the best chance of finding relevant literature in your search, start to build on these key concepts further by thinking of alternative words. You might like to consider:

  • synonyms
  • acronyms
  • spelling variations
  • regional variations.

Example: Alternative words

Our example assignment topic

Discuss how the development of artificial intelligence will impact University Libraries in the next 5 years.

Here's an example of alternative words for the three key concepts from our assignment topic:

Key Concept 1 Artificial Intelligence AI, machine learning, robotics
Key Concept 2 University College, higher education, tertiary education
Key Concept 3 Library Libraries

This forms our list of keywords to use in our search.

Quick tip: A Search Planner (Word docx, 30KB) can help you keep track and assist you in building effective searches!