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Using Google

The following are some tips for using Google to get the best results available:

Perform a standard search:

The simplest and most common way to perform a standard Google search is to enter one or more carefully chosen keywords in the search box on the Google main page.

Perform an advanced search:

Advanced Search Link

Although the standard search provides results, you may find that you get a much more relevant set of search results by using the Advanced Search option.

  • Search a particular Web site. If there's a particular Web site that might cover your topic, you can use the Google Advanced Search field to “search within a site or domain,” along with a particular keyword or keywords appropriate to your topic, to search that site to the exclusion of everything else on the Web. For example, suppose you want to search Cornell’s site for references to plagiarism. To perform that search, enter “www.cornell.edu” in the Google Advanced Search “search within a site or domain” field, and then enter “plagiarism” in the “all these words” field.
    Google Site Search
  • Search a particular class of Web sites. If you want to search only a particular class of Web sites—for example, education sites—you can use Google Advanced Search to do that, too. To search only sites ending in “.edu,” enter “.edu” in the “Search within a site or domain” field.

Use Google Scholar:

Menu to select Google Scholar

For scholarly research, you also can use Google Scholar. Google Scholar searches a more academic subset of the Web. What Google considers scholarly will sometimes differ from what professors and librarians consider scholarly, but in general, Google Scholar will return a more relevant set of results than a regular Google Search.

TIP: You can use Google Scholar to get to some (though certainly not all) of the resources the library has licensed from off-campus (it's automatic if you are on campus). See Why Everything Isn't Available Online and Free for more information about licensed resources and why you need to indicate that you are affiliated with Cornell to get these paid services.

Set your Google Scholar Preferences so that Google recognizes you as a Cornell person, knows what you have access to, and will let you keep your references in a citation management program.

  • In Google Scholar, go to Scholar Preferences.
  • Under Library Links settings, choose the Cornell options and under Bibliography Manager, choose RefWorks.
  • Now Get it! Cornell links (which will link to the full-text article, help you search the Cornell University Library catalog for the source, or allow you to request the article through interlibrary loan) appear in your search results, as well as links to Export to RefWorks or other citation management software.