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Academic Writing Guide

Identify Keywords

The keywords you use can have a profound impact on your search results. Using the “right” words will speed up the research process, while the “wrong” words can bring to it to a halt.

Before you can begin searching for information, you need to identify keywords related to your topic. Key terminology can be easily be found by scanning: 

  • Your research questions
  • Articles found from background research
  • Bibliographies found at the end of books and articles

If you are still struggling:

  • Use a thesaurus to identify synonyms
  • Brainstorm keywords with a librarian, your instructor, or a friend


Develop a Search Strategy

Want to be more strategic when searching for articles, books, etc.? Use our Search Strategy Worksheet to help you develop keywords, narrower and broader searches, and track your searches.

Where can I find information on my topic?

Need to find sources? There are a variety of places to look for information both within and outside of your Franklin Library. Here are some recommended places to search for information: 

How to Search the Library

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