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Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in STEM
Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in STEM

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5.2.1 Planning your search

You will start the process by identifying keywords for the research question(s) and area of interest of your inquiry which will help guide the literature search. So, for example, if you were investigating the challenges students face in carrying out collaborative activities in discussion forums, some of the keywords could be ‘discussion forums’, ‘collaboration’ and ‘team working’.

If you have already been recommended a couple of resources such as journal or conference papers to look at, you may like to look at the keywords mentioned in these papers. The language and terminology of your discipline will also help you to identify the most effective keywords for your search.

To get an idea of how effective these keywords are, try them out using an online search engine. If the result is too many or too few hits, refine the keywords.