Academic Coach Weekly, Issue 2

· Education

Academic Coach Weekly: Issue 2 (September 18, 2015)

Jaclyn Holland-Strauss (on Facebook), JaclynHStrauss on Twitter

University can be overwhelming, but I coach individuals and groups at reasonable rates.

Includes proofreading from beginning to end.

Boolean Searching in Databases

Boolean searching is what librarians and other information seekers use to refine their searches. Let’s begin with the use of AND. Let’s say your paper topic includes two important concepts. You must find articles which encompass BOTH terms. So you type in ‘Austen’ AND ‘Northanger Abbey.’ This narrows down the available articles from those just written about someone named Austen, or articles just written about that particular book. There’s a common-sense analogy that you can use to demonstrate this concept. Let’s say you have joined a dating site online. You are a heterosexual female who is looking for a date. The pickier you are, the fewer possible matches you are going to find. For example, let’s say you want someone who is not overweight. And you want someone who is a certain height. More ANDS, fewer hits!

Tips for Midterms/Exams: Memorizing

Any class can have a midterm where you need to memeorize. If you want to remember the theme for every piece of literature that you can be asked about, the themes could be darkness, poverty, romance, innocence, arrogance, and exhiliration. These form the acronym ‘diaper.’ D for darkness, I for innocence, A for arrogance, P for poverty, Exhiliration, and R for romance. This is a silly word, but that’s partly the point. It’s memorable because it’s silly and the more that you remember for an exam, the higher your mark will be. So you have an easy word to remember that will help you think of all of the themes relevant to your question. It’s easy to forget about an individual poem if you haven’t consciously prepared yourself to remember each title. 

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