Search engines are useful for finding information, but sometimes it is hard to wade through the bad results to get to quality information and reputable websites.
Use these tips to search Google like a pro:
- Limit the domains you search. e.g. Search for government sites by putting site:.gov in your search. If you have a specific site in mind you can be more specific in your Google search e.g. site:nass.usda.gov
- Remove commercial sites from your results by putting a minus sign in front e.g. -site:.com
- Exclude words or websites you don't want with a minus sign. e.g. -site:.wikihow.com
- Put quotation marks around a phrase to reduce the number of results. e.g. "chewing gum"
- Use OR to search for one of many options. e.g. campers OR hikers
- An asterisk * is often used as a wildcard in search engines and databases e.g. camp* will search for camp, campers, camping, etc.
- Use the Advanced Search to help create a focused search.
Note: many search engines will allow you to refine your search in a simlar fashion.