Why save searches?
Using a template, as in the activity below, allows you to copy/paste into different databases as you test and refine your search strategies.
Recording notes is helpful to remember why a search was done, why some terms were included or excluded, or why a limiter was used.
Recommended information to record in a search strategy:
- date of the search
- database(s) searched
- specific search terms / search strategies, and the associated results
- any limits you’ve applied e.g. date ranges, types of resources
- grey literature sources used
- other techniques e.g. searching print journals, contacting experts
- notes or comments about which searches are most effective (and which were not useful)
Many databases have built-in functions to save your searches. You can use these settings to automatically run to capture new publications on your topic and have them emailed to you.
Example in Ebsco:
Video © EBSCO Industries