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Organizational & Technical Communication - COMM115 - Final Project

Research resources for the final project in Organizational & Technical Communication.

Developing Keywords

Finding the right words to search for your topic is a vital part of using the library databases to do research. Rather than typing your full research question or thesis into the library databases, pull out the most important terms, or keywords.

  • Example: What are solutions to the problem of breaches in cybersecurity?
    • Try keywords like cybersecurity, breach, and solution

For your Organizational Communication class, the keywords you use will be specific to this field, and may be more technical than terms you used when doing research for other classes. Look for words in your textbook or on the assignment instructions for your final project!

Brainstorm synonyms for your terms, so if your search does not turn up the results you are hoping for, you can try a different word or phrase.

  • Example: cybersecurity, "computer security," "information technology security"
  • Example: breach, violation, leak, hacking

Search techniques

  • If you are looking for examples from a specific company, make sure that you enclose it in quotation marks if it is more than one word: "General Motors."
    • The same is true for any other phrase you use that has more than one word (like "business etiquette" or "intercultural communication.")
  • To combine the name of a company with the issue being studied, use the word AND. This will force the database to only find you articles that mention both or all of your terms: "General Motors" AND automation.
    • Use AND to combine multiple words or phrases to make your search more specific.

Google Search Techniques

Use site: to target specific websites or domains. Do not type a space after site: but do type a space before your search term.

  • Example - site:.gov COVID-19
  • Example - site:nba.com vaccine

Finding articles in Library Databases

Most databases that will be helpful for this assignment can be found in our Business database list.

Look for a "permalink" or "get link" button on the article page, or take the URL from inside the citation (also available in the database). DO NOT take the URL from the browser bar; it will expire after your session.

Business Source Elite also contains a Thesaurus in the upper menu that can help you find synonyms, broader terms, or narrower terms.

Business Source Elite

ABI/INFORM also contains a Thesaurus in the middle menu that can help you find synonyms, broader terms, or narrower terms.

ABI/INFORM