Tag Archives: Google+

Check Out These Tips for Improving Your Google Search

You probably have been using Google your entire academic life.  But there is more to this search engine than typing in keywords.  Improve your Google search by utilizing some of these recommended tips useful for all types of research.

Google Searching Image

Improving your Google Search: Tips and Tricks to help you master the simple search

1. Site: To find pages within a specific site type “site:” followed by a website or domain. Example: site:latimes.com

2. Exclude words: To exclude a term from your search use the minus (-) sign in from of the term. Example: Taylor Swift –sucks

3. Similar words: Use the tilde (~) sign in front of a word to search synonyms. Example ~college will also retrieve university.

4. “Quotation Marks”: Searches the exact phrase instead of individual words. Example “Global Warming”

5. Number Ranges: Include two periods when you want to search within two number ranges. Suitable for years, prices or series of numbers. Example: Oscar winners 2000..2014

6. Document Type: To search for a particular document type such as a pdf, PowerPoint, doc, jpeg. Example: filetype:pdf

7. Definitions: Put define: in front of a word for a quick definition. Example: define:impetuous

8. Calculator: For simply math problems consider using Google (+,-,*,/). Example: 365/5*12

9. Unit Converter: Easy unit converter, just type what you would like to convert such as temperature, volume. Mass, area, speed, length, or time. Example: 3 quarts to cups.

Have questions? You can always Ask a Librarian for help!

– Jamie Johnson

Secret Google Tips

Google imageYou probably use Google all day, every day.  Google’s default search is powerful enough to easily get you good results most of the time.  But did you know there are ways to use Google to get precisely what you want?

Google Scholar searches as broadly as possible for academic research.  It’s a good choice for very specific or obscure topics. You can even use Google Scholar to access CSUN subscription content

Another option for authoritative websites is searching by a specific domain, like .com, .edu, or .gov. Just add site:.edu to your search terms to look only at results from educational institutions, or site:.gov to your terms to search only US government websites.

For example, if you search for crime statistics, you’ll get a mix of police departments, newspaper reports, Wikipedia, and real estate websites, which might not be reliable, precise, or current. But if you search for crime statistics site:.gov, your very first result will be the official FBI Uniform Crime Statistics – the most detailed, comprehensive reliable source for crime statistics in the US.

Did you know Google has a reverse image search?  Maybe you’ve found the perfect image for a presentation, but you don’t know the photographer to cite. Start at Google Image Search, then click on the camera icon to the right of the search bar.  You can upload a picture or paste in an image URL, and Google will display pages that include matching images.

If you’re taking a course in Education or Child & Adolescent Development, you might want to find webpages by reading level – basic, intermediate, or advanced.

Google reading level

More options are available at google.com/advanced_search.  You can limit your results by language, country, date last updated, and more.

For more help using Google, ask a librarian!

Laura Wimberley