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BIOL 338: Human Impact on the Environment

This guide will help you find the resources you need for your Biology 338 research assignment

Scholarly Sources and Search Tips

This video will provide you with an overview of how to conduct database searches. You may want to search in Academic Search Premier, like the video shows, or select a Biology-specific database. You will also need to figure out which key words will work for your topic -- try to keep it to 2 or 3 main concepts when you conduct your search, such as fracking AND "climate change" AND "United States". 


Tips Examples
Use keywords, not long search phrases

Instead of searching for "What are the human impacts on the vaquita dolphin population?" break down your search into the main keywords:

human impacts, vaquita dolphin, Phocoena sinus, endangered

To get more focused results:

Use quotation marks (" ") to keep phrases together

Use AND to combine different keywords

"human impacts" AND "phocoena sinus"

To get broader results:

Use OR to combine similar/associated keywords

("vaquita dolphin" OR "phocoena sinus") AND "human impacts"

Look for ways to limit your search in the database You can often limit by type of article (scholarly and peer-reviewed) & year of publication
Look for REVIEW articles Limit your search by review articles, which are often easier to read because they summarize the research that's been done. These are also peer-reviewed sources, so they would count towards your required number of peer-reviewed, scholarly sources. 

Venn Diagram of Boolean Operators (AND, OR, NOT)

Venn diagram of boolean operators

Biology Databases

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