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How to Search the Internet

APSU Librarians have selected high-quality, college level web sites and added them to Felix. See instructions for Finding Internet Resources.  If these sites don't meet your needs, you may want to search the Internet for credible, quality information.

Which search tool is best for your research?
List & description of search tools

Before starting, make sure you are looking in the right place for what you need. Just as you would not look in a book for yesterday's sports scores, there are certain types of information the Web will not contain. So, don't waste time. Before searching, ask yourself:


here are some things the web does well, and other things it does poorly)

If you are looking for extensive information on a topic, gathered conveniently and compactly in one place, with history or research, with bibliography and footnotes, you need BOOKS.

If you are looking for scholarly studies, detailed research studies, or details of clinical or surgical procedures, the web might possibly have something, but it is not a high probability source. For this kind of material you should be using PROFESSIONAL AND SCHOLARLY JOURNALS, and to locate articles in those, you should be using PERIODICAL DATABASES.

What you CAN expect to find on the net, and what the net does brilliantly, is:

  1. Pictures--the net is full of excellent pictorial sources--art, diagrams, maps, costume, architecture...

  2. Government information--laws, court cases, statistics, important historical documents, may all be found on the net.

  3. Interactive files--interactive frog dissection, virtual patients, ask an expert sites, sites that will map routes for you, etc.

  4. Files of animations, videos, music, and speeches. (Your browsers will need to have the appropriate attached software for viewing or listening.) Whenever you need a demonstration of how to do something, try the internet.

  5. Reference sources. Use the Reference Section of the Internet Public Library's site where pages are arranged by subject to help narrow your search.

  6. Discussion forums where you can interact with others in your field.

  7. News. The web abounds with timely and reliable local, national, and international news sources.

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