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Task 1.1.5 – Select the appropriate search or monitoring tools


Description of Task 1.1.5 – Select the appropriate search or monitoring tools

This task invites students to identify and select appropriate search or monitoring tools best adapted to their needs.

Supplemental Information

Students must distinguish and choose search tools that will allow them to find pertinent documents according to the objective of the assignment and to the content required.

Requirements - Suggestions

Students are able to describe the characteristics of the tools. They know what each tool can find. They can provide a summary with comments of the tools consulted.

Potential Tools

Here are search or monitoring tools used in colleges:

  • Databases provided by college websites or by the BAnQ (Bibliothèque et archives nationales du Québec), such as and Repère;
  • Library catalogues, such as Koha and Regard;
  • General search engines such as Google, Yahoo or Bing, or more specialized ones such as Google Scholar;
  • Dynamic content aggregators: RSS threads (e.g. Feedly and Netvibes), blogs and microblogs;
  • Social media (e.g. Twitter);
  • Directories or on-line year books (e.g. business directories).

In Practice

Achieving this task raises a great deal of interest in students. They discover new tools and realize that Google is not the only search engine available to them and that, in fact, it cannot find everything they need to carry out their assignments.

Selecting tools can be done based on specific criteria, including: the type of document to find, the assignment to be completed, the intellectual level of the search or domain of studies. It often happens that more than one tool must be used in order to obtain all of the information necessary to complete the work.

Because search engines are closely linked to different types of documents/sources, the tools used will vary from one discipline to the other. It is therefore important to know and use the tools specific to one’s discipline.

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