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SharpSchool Picks: The Top Six Academic Search Engines

We all know what search engines are and what they can do. But how much do you know about academic search engines?

Search engines are used daily all over the world. They search through various sites, but just how effective is it for students that are researching topics for class assignments and projects? Not very many students are aware that there are academic search engines tailored for the world of academia and are available for their use. This is because most people don’t know anything about search engines past Google or Yahoo!.

Academic Search Engines not only search the usual websites that Google and Yahoo! will search, but they will go beyond that and pull up resources from many different school databases, documents and online encyclopedia’s. Here are a few online search engines that you (teachers) may want to pass onto your students the next time that you assign a research assignment, no matter the size.

Here are SharpSchool’s top 6 academic search engines:

  1. Google Scholar :focuses on searching through ‘scholarly literature’, such as articles, thesis’, books, abstracts, court opinions from academic publishers, professional societies, universities and other web sites. Google scholar prides themselves in staying up to date with recent developments in any and all areas of research.
  2. Infotopia: offers resources and websites selected by librarians and teachers. This site is directed to student, teachers and more so homeschoolers.
  3. Infomine: is a librarian built virtual library of Internet resources directed to teachers, students and research staff of various universities. This site has access to a variety of databases, electronic journals, eBooks, bulletin boards, mailing lists, catalogs, articles, etc. Librarians from University of California, Wake Forest University, California State University, and many others, have assisted in building this great resource.
  4. ERIC: stand for Education Resources Information Center. ERIC provides unlimited access to more the 1.4 million bibliographic records from a variety of resources. You may even find full PDFs. The ERIC users conduct over 13 million searches per month.
  5. CiteULike: a free service for managing and discovering scholarly references. This site allows you to add your own references to the online database, and store and save searches. You also have the option to share your finds with your peers.
  6. BASE: stands for Bielefeld Academic Search Engine. BASE is operated by Bielefeld University Library, and prides itself in being `the world’s most voluminous search engines especially for academic open access web resources.

Have you used any of these academic search engines? What are your thoughts? Let us know by leaving a comment or tweeting us @SharpSchool.

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