Google presentation 2014-11-12

Like a Pro
Gina Kessler Lee, Librarian
[email protected]
About Gina
• Information Literacy Librarian since September
o Information literacy is the ability to “recognize when information is needed
and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed
information” - American Library Association. Presidential Committee on
Information Literacy. Final Report. (Chicago: American Library Association,
• Certified Google “Power Searcher,” thanks to this
MOOC: Power Searching With Google
Contact me with questions: [email protected]
What brings you here?
What do you want to learn?
Other Fish in the
Search Engine Sea
How Google Works
“Crawls” the web from link to link
Saves, or caches, a copy of each page
Adds every word to The Index
Decide which sites to rank at the top using
an algorithm of 200+ factors
• Keeps track of what people search and
what result they click on to improve results
• Follows you around the web to better sell
you ads (see:
• Google can’t get to everything.
Surface Web
Deep Web
Dynamic content
Unlinked content
Stuff on the free and
open web
Content behind
(e.g., library databases)
Scripted or non-text
General Google Tips
• Every word counts, and so does word order
• Capitalization and punctuation don’t
matter (usually)
• Google spellchecks and searches synonyms
General Google Tips
• Look at the bolded words to see why Google
brought back a particular result:
Google Search Tricks
• Google will calculate all kinds of things
Google Search Tricks
• Put phrases/titles/lyrics in quotation marks
“the immortal life of henrietta lacks”
• Put words you want spelled as is in quotation marks
“cornell west”
• You can use OR to search alternate terms
Library exhibits college OR university
• Use a minus sign to exclude results with a
certain word
“saint mary’s college” –indiana -maryland
Google Search Tricks
• Use two periods to search number ranges
propaganda 1925..1945
• Use * to imply a missing word
there’s a * that never goes *
• Search within a site or domain
“google like a pro”
race longitudinal youth
library exhibit typewriter site:edu
Practice 1
• Ugh, I quoted a book in my paper on the
Camp David accords but now I forget
where I got the quote. It goes like this:
Peace would ruin everything.
o How would you go about finding the
source with Google?
Practice 2
• I want a report on climate change from a US
government website. What should I type in
You can also use these tips
in Gmail, Drive, etc.
You can also use these tips in…
Google’s other search tools
Google Scholar
• Settings > Library Links > Saint Mary’s College of
California (to see SMC-subscribed content)
• Or go through the SMC Library databases list
Google Images
• Search tools allow you to filter by size, color, type,
time, and…
• Now with filtering by usage rights!
Google Images
• You can also do a reverse image search:
Google Books
• Find where a quote came from, find an anthology
that contains a specific story or essay, find full text
of out-of-copyright books, see old magazine ads
Google News
• “Google News is a computer-generated news site
that aggregates headlines from more than 50,000
news sources worldwide, groups similar stories
together, and displays them according to each
reader's interests.”
• For older content, try Google Newspaper Archives
News Flash: The Library Has
Newspaper Articles Too
• Looking for a specific newspaper article?
Look up the newspaper on our website to
see if the Library has it! We have access to
thousands of newspapers, current and
Google Maps
• Enter keywords and
• Find a picture of an SMC lacrosse, baseball, OR
soccer team on a field.
• Hint: what color is a field?
• Filter by the color green! And search on the SMC
• What is this building?
• Hint: the URL of the image is:
• You’re interested in historical approaches to
dealing with ebola, but now that the ebola crisis is
happening, your search for ebola just brings back
current news and warnings. How would you find
ebola news from before 2014?
Can’t find what you’re looking for?
How to teach students to
be better searchers
• Face it: they’re going to use Google. Adapt.
• Encourage them to think before they search: what
kind of organization or site would have authoritative
info on this topic?
• Check out Google in Education for sample lesson
• A Google a Day (live or archived)
• Hold them accountable for the quality of their
• Schedule a class session with a librarian!
Sample uses of Google in
the classroom
• Compare info on the Web vs. library sources
• Discussions re: privacy, preservation of knowledge,
information sharing, digital citizenship
• Track how vocabulary changes over time using
Google books Ngram
• Visit sites & museums via World Wonders Project,
Google Street View, Google Art Project
• Analyze data with Public Data Explorer, Fusion
Learn More
Power Searching With Google (online class)
Google Search Secrets (ebook)
Google Tools for Education (online video)
In the Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes
our Lives (book)
• The Googlization of Everything (And Why We Should
Worry) (book & ebook)
Bookmark these sites!

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