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Government and organisation information

Key learning points

In this section, you will learn:

  • the benefits of searching the web
  • how to perform an effective internet search
  • a list of reputable websites for:
    • background information
    • online health information providers
    • government information
    • non-government organisations
    • professional bodies


You won't find everything you need for your study in the Libraryimage of computer with web search
Collection and databases. Therefore, it is important to search the internet to find any information from other reputable sources such as government departments, non-government organisations (NGOs), and professional bodies.

A simple search using a search engine (e.g. Google) will often find:

  • government documents
  • organisational information reports
  • guidelines, policies and standards
  • codes of conduct
Note: Sometimes, it is more effective to go directly to a website for the information you need.

Search the web

Internet search engines such as Google do not have sophisticated search interfaces like the Library Collection or databases. Therefore, your search will need to be broad.

Below is an example of a Google search for guidelines.image example: searching guidelines in Google
Notice the brackets are used to group all the document types together and AND is used to connect with your main concept.

If you wish to search for Australian guidelines only, use AND to connect Australia as another concept.

image example: searching australian guidelines in Google

Note: Truncation symbols do not work well in Google. It's better to search for variation of terms separately, e.g. guidelines OR guideline.

Search for documents within a particular website

You can use Google to locate documents within a particular website. Below is an example of a Google search for a government published document:

  • in the search field, type site: and then enter the URL without the www.
  • Enter the keywords and document type immediately after the URL.

image example of Google search a document within a website

Note: This search technique will only work for publicly available document, it cannot retrieve information from any Library database with a firewall.

Learn more:

Background information

Finding quality websites

Health On The Net is a non-profit organisation that promotes transparent and reliable health information online.

It contains a directory of certified health websites that have been evaluated by medical professions for accuracy and authority.

You can search the directory for websites, organisations, or subject areas:

Government information

Non-government organisations

Professional bodies

Policies, practice and standards

Other relevant guides