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Research Guides@Tufts

SOC 0185: Digital Hate

This guide is designed to support students in Sociology 185: Digital Hate

Keyword Searching

The most common type of library search is generally known as the keyword search. Your keywords are the most essential terms relevant to your topic of interest. It is best to:

  • identify these keywords
  • think of as many synonyms and related concepts for your keywords as possible
  • try combining your keywords using Advanced Search in JumboSearch or other research databases
  • combine 2-4 nouns per search
  • Combine keywords using AND/OR:
    • AND two combine distinct keywords, ex. Islamophobia AND Facebook
    • OR to account for synonyms, ex. Islamophobia OR anti-Muslim

More Tips:

  • If you generate 600 hits, increase the specificity of your search using the advanced search options. 
  • Try searching for terms in the article’s abstract, rather than in the title or keywords (often too narrow) or in the full text (far too broad)
  • If you find “nothing,” broaden your search. There may be no work on exactly what interests you - this is not a problem. A literature review on state-sponsored Anti-Islamic sentiment online can draw on analogous work such as research state-sponsored hatred about other groups (as well as research on state-sponsored Anti-Islamic sentiments in non-digital contexts, research on social movements’ Anti-Islamic sentiment online, etc.).