Keywords are also called search terms. They are the words we enter into the search box that target the information we seek. What you put into the search box is very important because if you use an incorrect term, you may be missing out on scholarship and information on your topic. The best way to avoid this issue is to try out various keywords and their synonyms.
Hint: Keep track in a spreadsheet or research journal so that you know which keywords worked well and which didn't. You can also track the databases that you look in so that you are sure to check various places.
You can brainstorm your keywords in whatever way works best for you, but here's how I do it:
Keyword 1 - Synonym 1 OR Synonym 2 OR Synonym 3
For example: Ladino - "Judeao-Spanish" OR "Judeo-Spanish" OR "Ladino language"
When it comes time to search, you can swap your synonyms in and out to see what works best. You can also create complex search logic using multiple synonyms at the same time, connecting them with OR:
For example: (Ladino OR "Judeao-Spanish" OR "Judeo-Spanish") AND morphology
The above example will find you all things about Morphology AND Ladino, plus all things about morphology AND "Judeao-Spanish," plus all things about morphology AND "Judeo-Spanish." However, if you prefer, you can do those three searches separately. You can use this Boolean-style search in internet search engines (Google), library catalogs (OneSearch, Chinook), and databases (MLA, JSTOR, etc.).
The dialect zone you choose to work with for this project can also be a keyword. Be sure to search for it in both English and Spanish and also try alternate spellings if needed.
Image by Martorell [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons
Databases are subscription-bases resources that University Libraries makes available to you. They typically include articles from journals related to a specific academic discipline or your major area of study. Each database looks different, but they often work in similar ways. Please review the information above in the "Searching Techniques" box to learn how to use these resources. You can also look for a help menu or "About" page within each database, or contact your Subject Librarian.
Note: Databases often contain the full text of articles, but sometimes only show you a citation to things. Use the Find it at CU link to locate the full text in another subscription database or request the article at no cost to you through Interlibrary Loan.
If you were interested in loísmo in usage in the Spanish language, you might try a search like loísmo AND Spanish, or loísmo AND español. You could also combine the searches into loísmo AND (Spanish OR español) and get the results of the first two searches in one results list! To do this, use the Boolean OR between your synonyms and put them in parentheses, or use the advanced search screen and put your synonyms in the same box:
There are billions of examples of actual Spanish usage on the web, but it can be tricky to harness the power of the web for your purposes. Below are a few websites to get you started, along with brief descriptions.
AND link words by AND to search for all words in the same resource
OR link words by OR to search for one word or another (instead of both/all words)
NOT to eliminate results with a certain term
“Quotations” – add quotations to a group of two or more words to search for the exact phrase
OneSearch is the main search box you'll find on the library home page. It searches our library catalog, Chinook, plus a whole bunch of other great resources including article databases. If you know you need a book or journal, or to find out if we have a subscription, you can just use Chinook Classic.
Chinook has its own tips and search techniques. Check out the link below to learn how to use it like a pro!
Take your BuffOne Card or photo ID to the circulation desk or a self-check out station.
Undergraduates: 28 day loan period; up to 300 items
Graduates/ Faculty/ Staff: 180 day loan period; up to 300 items
Use Prospector to request physical materials from other Colorado libraries at no cost to you! Prospector is generally the quickest way (3-5 business days) to get materials not available at CU-Boulder.
Use Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad) to request electronic materials from other libraries. You can also request physical materials like books that are not available at CU or in Colorado through Prospector.