e.g. (example)

What does it help you do?


Immersion AND university

- Find documents that contain all the keywords.


acquisition OR learning

- Find documents that contain any of the keywords.


Teaching NOT instruction

- Exclude specific keyword(s) from your search.

Be careful! you might exclude a potentially useful document!



- Search for different variations of a keyword.

        e.g. learner, learned, learning


second language acquisition

- Search for a phrase.




- Search for irregular plurals or spelling variations.

       e.g. recognized, recognised; canceled, cancelled

Be aware that you can use multiple operators in a search string by putting them in parentheses.

For example: (“learn*” OR teach*) AND (acquisition* OR learning*) AND recogni?ed

Use one or several filters (author, date, language, format, publisher or others) available through an advanced search to make your search results more relevant.

You can also watch a video on conducting an advanced search in a KOHA library catalogue.

Research Essentials


If your search results are still not quite living up to your expectations, make sure you have done the following :

·         Ensure that you have properly spelled the search terms for your query.

·         Did you take the time to define your research topic appropriately?

·         Did you choose the most relevant search terms?

·         Have you identified the type of document that would be the most relevant to your search?

·         And, to conclude, have you tried the advanced search?

Still not quite happy with your results?

·         Come talk to the Julien Couture Resource Centre staff or…

·         Send your question(s) to our email:

Below is a list of short videos that can help you get more information on conducting your research:

Why Use the Library?

Why Can’t I Just Search Google?
University of Rhode Island Libraries, 2:26 min.
What are the library databases and which one should I use?
NEIU Ronald Williams Library, 1:22 min.

Searching 101

KOHA: Advanced Search

Luther Rice College & Seminary - Smith Library, 2:25 min.

Scholarly vs. Popular Sources
Scholarly vs. Non-Scholarly 
vculibraries, 3:39 min. 

AND, OR & NOT (Boolean Logic)
Boolean Operators
GaStateULibrary, University of Auckland, 4:49 min. 

Choosing/Developing Research Topics…

Developing a Research Question
Steely Library NKU, 4:33 min. 

Choosing/Evaluating Sources

Primary and Secondary Sources
Steely Library NKU, 2:05 min. 
How Library Stuff Works: How to Evaluate Resources (the CRAAP Test)
McMaster Libraries, 2:09 min

Citing Sources
How we cite?
UNC Writing Center, 2:12 min. 
Plagiarism Rap
Cite your Sources, 1:03 min. 

(Source: Dawson College Library Website)