Yes, you can use Google (try Google Scholar) or any other Internet search engine to locate resources... but how do you know when what you have found is authoritative and trustworthy?
You may want to find answers for these questions:
- is the author affiliated with an academic institution?
- is a biography available for the author from a trusted (reference) source?
- what is the reputation of the author?
- is the article peer-reviewed?
- who has cited (used) this article in other research?
- is the web site associated with an educational institution?
- is there a physical address associated with the web site / author?
Tip: If you find an article abstract that is interesting, but you cannot find the full text online, copy all the information from the citation as you will need this information to locate the full text through our subscriptions. Look up the name of the journal in which the article is found (not the name of the article!) in the library's search tool to see if we have a subscription. If we do, select the link that will provide access to the right volume and issue (or locate it on the shelf for print subscriptions).
Tip: If there is any doubt as to whether an article is academic or peer-reviewed, you can consult
or confirm it with your professor or with a librarian before using it.
- The essential guide to using the Web for research / Nigel Ford (2012) ZA4228 .F67 2012
- Information skills : finding and using the right resources / Jonathan Grix, Gerald Watkins (2010)
ZA3075 .G75 2010
- Student guide to research in the digital age : how to locate and evaluate information sources / Leslie F. Stebbins (2006)
ZA3075 .S74 2006