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Cicero-North Syracuse High School
6002 Route 31
Cicero, NY 13039
(315) 218-4100
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Library Research

General Search Tips:

Check your spelling

Try using fewer words on your search

Try searching in more than 1 database.  If the first database you look in doesn’t offer up any information, try another.  It is very rare that you will find exactly what you need the first time.

Use Synonyms and related words in your search.  Think of different ways to say the same thing

  • Example: searching for kids, try children, adolescents, youths etc…

Use your Boolean Operators.

  • If no results are coming up, use OR and put in different ways to say the same thing.  The database will search for any or all of those words.
  • If too many results are coming up, AND your search terms together.  This is a way to search for multiple search terms at the same time
  • If you are getting results that have nothing to do with your topic, use NOT.  This will eliminate certain words from your search.

Remove any limiters from your search (date, page ranges, etc.)

  • Try using truncation symbols (*) in your search.  Put in a root word and then * and the database will search for all words beginning with that root word.
    • Example: industry* will look search for industry, industrial, industrialized, industrialization, etc..

Multiple Sources:

Use more than one source if you think you’re dealing with questionable or biased information

Use more than one source if you are highlighting both sides of an issue


Finding Books:

When you search the library catalog, write down the call number of the book.  Go to the stacks and the browse the titles around this area.  Books are organized by topic, so books that have the same topic will be near other books with the same topic or related to that topic on the shelf.

The Internet:

When doing background research on your topic, Internet searches can be useful.  Web address with .gov and .edu are most likely to give you the most accurate information.  Remember that anyone can put up a webpage online.  Always back up the information you find in a more reliable source such as an article from a database or a book. 


Remember to ALWAYS CITE YOUR SOURCES!  This includes having an in-text citation after everything in your paper that is not common knowledge as well as a corresponding reference on your reference page.  Check out the EasyBib link located on the Library homepage to help with citations.

If you have any questions, please speak with Mrs. Daniels or Mrs. Andrews in the Library.

CNS High School Library
North Syracuse
Cicero-North Syracuse High School
6002 Rt. 31
Cicero, New York 13039