The first two of six planned sessions on Advanced Power Searching With Google were held the past Tuesdays at Cubberley Education Library. In these sessions, we covered strategies on using the “Search Tools” function, including how to filter image results based on physical characteristics of expected results; using site structure to search specific domains, specific sites, part of a sites, and even a specific file type. These sessions are based on content designed for and delivered to a worldwide audience in two Massive Open Online Classes (MOOCs) offered by Google last fall and winter.
During the first session, we got an overview of how search engines work, as well as what does and does not matter in search queries. A member of the team that created this MOOC at Google helped clarify many details, including differences between the current user interface on the Search page compared to that used in the MOOC, since it was recently updated. Many participants were surprised to discover the power of filtering results using color, date and others, as well as learning that word order matters when using the Google search engine – for instance, sky blue yields different results from blue sky.
The second session, held on April 23rd, covered the use of operators that take advantage of site structure at top domain and website levels. We explored narrowing our searches to government (.gov), educational (.edu), institution (stanford.edu, ucla.edu, nih.gov), even country (.cn for China) sites. Searching for specific file type, eliminating invasive results and finding exact sequence of terms were also covered.
In the next session, we will delve into the advanced searching which requires a combination of the skills covered above, together with some new strategies.
You can find the Prezi presentations at:
Session 1: Power Searching Part 1
Session 2: Power Searching Part 2