Sometimes we forget how insanely helpful the internet can be. It makes available all the information in the world to you in a matter of clicks. While it might seem easy to use Google for less difficult searches like how to prepare a dish, the best way to disable an alarm, or the Trueblue Casino login, performing accurate and reliable research online can be quite complex. However, research plays a huge role in our career, social life, and health. If you’ve ever tried to find urgent information on the web to no avail, then you’ll know the frustration that comes with it. Thankfully, you can keep such experiences to a minimum by improving your research skills on the internet.
This article will provide tips to help you achieve this feat. Here are a few ways to boost your internet research skills.
12 Tips for Improving Your Internet Research Skills
1. Use Your Web Browser Properly
Web browsers have evolved over time with a lot of significant changes and modifications making them easier to use. These browsers have evolved from handling only one page at a time to being able to manage several pages at once. This has made browsing and the management of multiple open tabs convenient. On a PC, pressing Ctrl+T will open a new tab. If you want to open a new link without closing the original link, you can right-click and select “Open link in a new tab”. This is one of the many improvements on the web browser that makes for more efficient research.
2. Start Broad before Going into Specifics
Knowing where to begin your research can be a hassle. It is advisable to start broad before you delve into the specifics of your search. Using common search engines like Google, Wikipedia is a good place to start. They give you a much broader view of the subject.
3. Always Demand Verification
The internet is filled with a lot of information and most times they may be wrong – nothing but letters and symbols that have no relation to your search. Most of the authors on the internet who provide answers are not qualified to do so and they end up misleading you for their selfish gain. This means that while conducting online research on the internet, you need to question your results and their sources. Reliable websites will always state the source of their facts and figures. To get accurate and unbiased results, always stick to reputable websites.
4. Organize Your Materials
When you are collating your data, you will see a lot of information from web pages, videos, PDF, and more. It is important to organize all of the information you gather. Create a folder where you can save each file with the correct label and source URL. This will prevent you from losing important info or not being able to cite info properly.
5. Find Expert
One important step in your research is to find the sources you will need. People who are authorities in your field may have more insights to share. If you’ve written about a similar topic in the past then you will have a good idea of where to start – otherwise, you should look at the top pages or names that pop up in your search engine.
6. Know How to Recognize Quality Sources
Not every source you find on the internet is reliable and trusted. It helps to know how to recognize and separate good sources from bad ones. How do you find these sources? It involves a lot of thinking and you need to ask yourselves questions like;
- Does this source agree with the other sources I found?
- Is the author of a good reputation on the internet?
- Is the author an expert in his/ her field?
- Does the author’s view contradict my topic of research?
7. Be Open to Surprising Answers
When researching on the internet, you need to be open to getting unexpected and surprising answers. Your job is to gather your resources and filter through the answers you get to ensure they align with your questions.
8. Understand Your Queries Better
Before you begin to research, you need to understand your questions and queries. This will make your work clear and purposeful. Use search engines to understand your topic. Online encyclopedias serve as great sources of background information. They also break down complex topics by using simple terms.
9. Blend Your Sources
In research, there are two major types of sources: primary and secondary. Primary sources provide you with first-hand evidence or raw information while the secondary source provides second-hand information with thoughts from other researchers. You need both when researching. You should be able to blend the information you get from both sources to get better results.
10. Use Keywords
Keywords are the ideas and concepts that define what your search is all about. For example, you can have keywords like “men’s leather jacket,” “running shoes,” or “good shoe stores,” which don’t seem like full sentences, but they will produce several relevant hits on any search engine. These words help you limit your search and give you topics related to it. When using keywords, enclose them in quotation marks as this will help the search engine streamline your search and allow you to find the exact information you need.
Organize Your Results with Headings
Create headings that are in line with the research topic as this helps to organize your work and keep you from being overwhelmed. During your research, when you find a fact that would help you, place it under the appropriate heading. This will keep you aware of the amount of information you have gathered on a certain topic and what more is left.
Use More Than One Search Engine
Don’t rely on only one search engine when researching – check various services. You can start with a search engine that is recommended in your field or your most preferred search engine. Most search engines provide similar information on a topic but if you dig deep enough you’ll discover certain differences that will aid your research. Below are some effective search engines.
5 Best Research Tools
Google is the most-used search engine on the internet. With Google, you’ll find information on any subject you can think of. It features ads for businesses.
Bing is owned and operated by Microsoft. It provides a variety of services such as web, video, and image search.
It is a free online encyclopedia. It provides information on a lot of topics, including the history of people, places, and concepts.
Yahoo! is an online web service provider. It provides lots of services, including Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! Answers, and Yahoo! Finance.
5. Microsoft Edge
It is a web browser also created by Microsoft. It provides voice control, search functionality, and dynamic information all related to the searches in the address bar.
Everyone should have access to reliable information, and the internet has made it easier. This ease is perhaps why in-depth research has become more of a chore than an eye-opener. By using the tips above and trying out the tools mentioned, you should see significant improvement in your research skills.