Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Career & College Promise/ Early College

Brainstorming Search Terms

1) Identify the main question you will be investigating for your research.

Depending on your subject, you might be investigating questions like:

  • History: How did the Vietnam War affect the U.S. economy? 

  • Biology: What are some control methods for invasive weeds?

2) When you have a research question or topic in mind, start by identifying the most important concepts. 

ex. How did the Vietnam War affect the U.S. economy

ex. What are some control methods for invasive weeds?

3) Brainstorm additional keywords that are either synonyms or related terms. Use resources like a thesaurus or google search if you have trouble thinking of terms. You can also try a keyword map like the one on snappywords.com

Vietnam

War

U.S.

Economy

North Vietnam

conflict

United States

prosperity

South Vietnam

America

debt

Southeast Asia

economic 

Control

Methods

Invasive

Weeds

removal

tools

nonnative

plants

prevention

projects

"invasive species"

herbicides

"introduced species"

 

Concept Map

Making a concept map may help you to narrow down your topic or find key terms. 

 

invasive weeds concept map

Try searching for your topic in Credo Reference.

In addition to reference sources, Credo Reference has a mind map feature that will help you identify related terms and narrow down your topic.

Where to Find Search Terms

  • Scan article abstracts for terms
  • Check subject headings
  • Use the database thesaurus
  • Browse encyclopedia/wikipedia page for terms 
  • Look at autocomplete suggestions