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Assignment help

   How to use this guide

This assignment help will provide you with search strategies and tips to find literature for your report and essay.

Before you start your search look carefully at the assessment details provided. Understanding the parameters of the task and the types of information you need is critical.

Any questions please about the assessments should be clarified with the course coordinator.

Plan your search

   Get to know the terminology

Start by identifying the main ideas (keywords) related to the task. You should:

  • Look closely at the terminology used in the assessment description
  • Look closely at the terminology used in the readings provided
  • Draw on your own knowledge about the area
  • Do some scoping searching (basic searches) through a search engine
You may find it helpful to think about how you would describe the assessment to another person. What would you tell them so they understand the purpose of what you are doing?
   Consider alternative keywords

When thinking about keywords or terminology consider:

  • Synonyms or similar terms ideas may be described differently in the literature
evidence based practice versus evidence informed practice
teachers versus educators
  • Plurals or different word variations
policy versus policies
teachers versus teaching
  • Common acronyms
evidence based practice versus EBP
evidence informed practice versus EIP
  • Different word spellings in different geographic locations
analyse versus analyze
enrolment versus enrollment
   Consider visualising keywords
You may find it useful to create a table or mindmap to note down relevant keywords to use in your searches.
More help:

Where to search

   Consider alternative literature

Depending on what types of literature you are looking for will determine where you search. Below are some key places you may want to try:

Scoping searches Key databases Other search tools
Library collection Education collection APO (Analysis & Policy Observatory)
  A+ education Department for Education
  Other education databases  

More help:

Scoping the literature

   Search the Library Collection

The Library Collection is a good place to start your search for scholarly material. Use the "Refine my results" menu to refine your search to find exactly what you need.

Try searching evidence education

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   Connect keywords

Use quotations marks "..." around phrases to keep words together exactly. For example "evidence based" or "evidence informed"

Use truncation* to find the plural and other forms of a word

Add brackets () to group similar keywords together. For example ("South Australia" OR SA)

Use the filters under 'Refine my results' to find exactly what you need:

  • Narrow by Resource Type: Books or Articles or Videos
  • Find scholarly journal articles by selecting Show Only > Peer-reviewed Journals
  • Narrow your search by a Publication Date range
   Use advanced search

Type each separate idea or keyword onto a new line:

screenshot of example Library Collection advanced search

 

Search databases

   Search databases

Databases are online collections of resources including articles, papers, book chapters and reports.

Databases have advanced search options, helping to focus your search and find more relevant, scholarly references quickly.

Click on the Search tab in this guide to find some of the key databases that the library has identified for Education.

More help:
   Use advanced search

Type each separate idea or keyword onto a new line:

screenshot of advanced search in Education Collection database

Explore more

   Try something different

The more you explore the literature the more you find out. Use your growing understanding to amend your searches and make them better. Note down any new terminology, in the table or mindmap, to add into further searches. Searching is an organic process, and you need to evaluate constantly as you go.

Choose what to use

   Evaluate your resources

It is important that you critically evaluate the quality of the literature you find to make sure it is suitable to use.

You can go back to the parameters of the assessment to remind yourself:

  • What types of information are you being asked to find?
  • Does what you find actually answer the question or aim of the assessment?
More help:

Copyright, Academic Integrity & Referencing

   Copyright
Copyright infringement is a criminal offence punishable by law. The University takes its copyright obligations seriously and staff and students who breach copyright may face disciplinary action.
   Academic Integrity

“Academic integrity means a commitment to act with honesty, trustworthiness, fairness, respect and responsibility in all academic work. Academic integrity is the foundation of university life and is fundamental to the reputation of UniSA and its staff and students” (UniSA Assessment Policy & Procedures Manual, Section 9). 

Find out more about what is expected from you as a UniSA student and how you can demonstrate academic integrity throughout your degree.
   Referencing
Referencing is an extremely important part of your studies and it is imperative that you reference correctly to avoid any academic integrity misconduct issues.
   Display your references

Use a bibliographic management software to store, organise and cite your references. The Library supports the bibliographic management tool EndNote, although there are many free systems available.

More help:

navigate to the EndNote guide

Help

   Study Help

Study Help is an online hub complete with resources on assignment writing, referencing, study skills and more.

More help

   SAGE Campus

SAGE Campus contains self-paced and instructor-led online courses.

The Conduct a Literature Review course guides you through the entire process of preparing a literature review, selecting and analysing existing literature, and structuring and writing a quality literature review. Most importantly, the course develops skills in using evidence to create and present an engaging and critical argument.

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More help

 

For more help with this assignment please contact Ask the Library or the Student Engagement Unit.