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ENG 101 - Great Presidential Campaigns (Jamison)

3. Searching with Keywords

Once you've done some initial background reading, it's time to find more information about your chosen campaign and administration. To help you find more information on your topic, think about what particular words might be found in a good article about that topic.

A good search to start might be the candidate's name and "campaign" and the year. For example:

Carter and campaign and 1976

Unlike Google, our databases work best with short words or phrases (no sentences) combined with the word and (to let the computer you want articles with both of these terms). To search for a phrase, surround the phrase with quotation marks.

Bush and "presidential debates" and 2000

The year is especially important for presidents who have served two terms (i.e., Reagan, George W. Bush, Clinton and Obama) since you will want to specify which campaign you are discussing.

Keywords work best by trial-and-error. Never do only one search. Some keywords will work better than others, and some keywords may lead you to different articles than you found in your first search.  Search the databases with the keywords you selected to find relevant articles. And remember to ask a librarian if you need assistance coming up with keywords or looking for sources.