Understand your topic
Researching can be time consuming, therefore careful planning is critical. This example will help you understand the process:
"Discuss the core professional issues for occupational therapists working in aged care"
- Identify relevant keywords and alternative keywords to start your search
- Think about the differences in spelling e.g. ageing or aging
- Consider variations in terminology e.g. aged or elderly or "older person"
A concept map will help you focus, and structure your search
|Concept 1||Concept 2||Concept 3|
|professional issues||occupational therapist||aged|
|professional ethics||occupational therapy||older person|
|code of ethics||OT||elderly|
- Combine your keywords using OR and AND e.g.
- "professional issues AND "occupational therapy" will find results which include both these keywords
- aged OR "older person" OR elderly will find results which contain any of these keywords
- Use the asterisk * to truncate terms, e.g. therap* will find therapy, therapist, therapists
- Use double quotation marks to search by phrase, e.g. "type 2 diabetes" or "quality of life" or "aged care"
Combine your keywords for a library database search:
|"professional issues" OR ethics|
|AND||OT OR "occupational therap*" (note the use of asterisk and quotes)|
|AND||aged OR "older person" OR elderly|
Places to search
Library Search and Library databases will retrieve scholarly resources for your assessments, but other sources such as government websites will be helpful.