Recent research has suggested that an overwhelming number of people think they can get all the information they need on the basis of a Google search. The majority believe there is no need to probe further. Now imagine, if 98% of people got by on a web search for their data, think how much better you could achieve if you worked in the other 2%, looking further than Google.
Even if you did one extra thing to boost your research, you’d be well on the way to producing a work with a more rounded research base and a quality bibliography. You don’t even need to step away from the computer if you don’t want. Many academic libraries subscribe to hundreds (if not thousands) of specialised journals and you should be just a couple of clicks away. Your library website and departmental webpages should help you find the treasure. If not, ask a librarian. It’s what they’re there for!
Maybe a lot of students think the web search really will provide all the details they need to get on with their work. Or maybe they think it’s enough to get by and believe any extra work would take too long and wouldn’t produce enough extra credit. Either way, a lot of you are missing out. And it doesn’t take a lot of extra time to get a much greater return.
It’s more about walking a couple more yards than it is going the extra mile. There’s no excuse to scrimp on effort, because it doesn’t take a lot to bring everything into play. Unfortunately, when you start with the bare minimum of work, you’re likely to build a false belief that any extra work will bog you down completely. It only takes a couple of goes at sourcing more information to find that the reward for a few minutes extra work can be worth a bomb. So get to it!
If you want more help on how to take your research further with ease, I have 16 ways to help you with your research in the archives.
And if you’re really interested ( or need help sleeping… ), you can read more of my thoughts on Google versus libraries if you want.