Skip to Main Content

How to find information

Tips for seeking information.

Finding information on the internet

Sometimes basic Google is not enough. It's possible to make more precise searches by using Google's advanced search. There are also special Google search engines like GoogleScholar which is intended for searching scholarly documents.

  • Begin your search with general terms and concepts. Check the sources you found and you will find more and better terms to continue your search.
  • Narrow your search, you will get better results.
    • Use phrases, narrow by language or publication time.
    • You can also search for pages in the format that you prefer.
  • Learn how Google's advanced search works. -portal is web service of Finnish public administration. The portal contains e-services and forms, information links and news.

Tips for more effective Google-searches

Boolean operators

AND -  Google uses command AND by default -> both words appears in the same page, e.g.export marketing 
OR - Combine alternative search terms with the command OR (write the command by capital letters), e.g. megatrends OR trends
NOT -  Use the minus sign to eliminate results containing a certain word, e.g. future -climate

Other ways of defining the search

  • Use quotes to search for an exact phrase – this will help to reduce results to the most relevant on your topic,
    e.g. (”market entry” OR ”entry modes”)
  • Search within specific websites only – perform a site search directly from Google with this feature,
    e.g. ”Export marketing”
  • Exlude a specific site, e.g. ”Export marketing”

  • Use filetype to find downloadable files; e.g. "international business" "human resource management" filetype:pdf

  • If there’s a word in your search query that should stay exactly the way it is (and be given more importance in the query), prefix it with a +, e.g. "customer experience" +research

  • Use intitle to show only results with a specific word in the title, e.g. intitle:"business strategy"
    You can use intitle: multiple times in your query, and combine it with other operators
    e.g. (intitle:Finland OR intitle:Sweden) "foreign trade"

  • You can narrow the search results by date. Use the dropdown in the Tools menu.

  • You can find more tips, trick and hacks by searching Google searching (tips OR tricks OR hacks)

Evaluating the search results

It is possible that your search doesn't succeed at once. It is important to try different search terms and several ways to combine them.

1. If there are too many search results

  • refine your search terms by using more specific terms or limit your search by using more search terms (use AND operator between the terms)
  • narrow your search by language and publication time
  • move truncation symbol to the right

2. If there are too few search results

  • look for new search terms
  • use synonyms (OR operator between the terms)
  • try other information resources (databases)
  • delete limit options you have used
  • move truncation symbol to the left

3. If there are no search results at all

  • check the spelling
  • check the logic on how you have combined search terms
  • check if the database is suitable for you topic

Ask for help at the library or make an appointment with an information specialist.

Search images

There are good services on the internet where you can find photos free of copyrights.

Ho library can help you to search information?

Thank you "Common Craft" for the video!

Accessibility Statement