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Forensic Science: Searching effectively

Search Strategy

1. Developing Keywords

Keywords are essential to researching. Break down your topic into keywords. Create a list of  words or phrases that will help your search. Think of concepts or ideas that are related to your main topic - find words with similar meanings, synonyms.

2. Phrase Searching

Use quotation marks " " for a phrase, i.e. when your keyword is made up of two or more words. Your result will be more accurate, as the engine searches for this very specific phrase.

  • "soda bread"
  • "food technology"

3. Boolean operators

These search operators help to narrow or broaden your search - like AND, OR, NOT.

AND finds records containing both terms - to narrow the search.

  • "food technology" AND "bread making"
  • "gluten free" AND allergies

OR finds records containing either one or both terms. This broadens the search. It can also be used to account for variant spellings. For example:

  • food OR nutrition
  • bakery OR patisserie

NOT finds records containing the first term, but not the second term - it excludes.

  • chocolate NOT cake
  • gluten NOT bread

4. Truncation

Using the asterisk symbol * enables you to chop off unnecessary word endings - so only the stem of a word is looked at by the search engine.

This is very useful for finding a broader range of results - as the search engine will come up with plural or singular endings, nouns, verbs, adjectives, AE or BE spelling.

  • manag* : manager, managers, manages, managing, management, etc.
  • bak*: baker, bakery, baking, baked, etc.

Search Strategy Worksheet document

Using the Library Discovery Service Video

This video goes through how to make the best use of our Discovery Service to find resources for your assignments.

*Updated email at end of video - askalibrarian@lsbu.ac.uk*

Trouble Accessing A Resource

Getting an error message when you try to access our e-resources? You may need to try a different browser (Chrome, Firefox, IE) or device, or clear your cache.

If you are unable to access one of our journal articles, e-books, or other online resources, you can contact our e-Resources Team who are able to assist. Alternative links will be available for a select number of resources when service issues occur.

Email details of the item you are trying to access along with a screenshot of any error messages to: llreres@lsbu.ac.uk

Google Scholar

Google Scholar Search

To access articles in Google scholar at home you can add in the library's subscriptions:

  • Click Search above to open a new window
  • Go to the 3 bar icon in the upper left corner
  • Select the cog wheel to open Settings
  • Select Library links from the left hand column
  • Search for London South Bank University - Full-Text @ LSBU
  • Tick the box to add our collections in to the search

You computer will remember this choice until you clear your cookies/cache. You do not need to do this step if you are on campus.