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ARTH 1 - First-Year Seminar - Fall 2018: Modern Architecture

Resources selected by the Arts & Architecture Librarian to help with research on major 20th-century architects.

Some Search Tips and Techniques

It is often helpful to start with a brief overview of scholarship.  This type of summary, often found in a specialized encyclopedia or biographical dictionary, can help you focus on what part of a topic most interests you and it can point to readings that are generally considered important.  So check out the “Encyclopedias and Biographical Dictionaries” tab in this document.

After having some targets for your topic it is often time-efficient to start with LionSearch and after gathering some sources there moving on to more specialized sources.

In any system it is often good to start with simple searches and to adapt to more complex search strategies after having become familiar with the language used in the source you are searching.  Here are some techniques that improve search results in most systems:

Truncation = Chop off a word to get multiple endings

                  Usually an asterisk (*) sometimes other symbols

                  architect* = architect, architects, architectural, architecture

Phrase = Match words only if in this sequence.

                  Usually quotes (“ “) but sometimes other symbols

                  “elementary schools”

Boolean AND = Prefer if both terms are present.

                  librar* AND Aalto

Boolean OR = Give equal preference to both terms. (Good for synonymns.)

                 building* OR architect*

Field Specifiers = Limit a term to one part of the database record (author, subject, etc.)

                  See, for example, the Advanced LionSearch screen.     

Grouping Terms = Execute these combinations first.

                  Usually parentheses ().

                  Aalto AND (librar* OR school*)