Today, knowledge is more accessible than ever before. All we need to do, in case we need any particular piece of information, is connect to the Internet and search. However, when we think of this searching part of the puzzle, we also need to take individuality into consideration.
Of course, Google has indexed billions of both online and offline pages in order to help its users find precise answers to their queries within the shortest timespan possible. However, the way that people browse the web and use search engines in order to get answers is quite diverse.
If we start considering the bond between the Internet and education, we are bound to become aware of the abundance of connections. Yet, all these connections are triggered by questions that students ask in order to establish them. For instance, let us imagine an elementary school student who is writing an essay about a certain work of art, be it a painting, a book or anything else.
First of all, once this student of ours starts searching the information he/she needs, he/she will ask questions. This process of research will be based on a phrase, or even a sentence which will trigger the process of information filtration and research that needs to deliver only the most authentic and genuine results. But, taking into consideration the fact the the Internet, as an endless, gigantic bundle of websites and information, is constantly changing, along with the people who use it, finding the right results may not be as easy as it might seem. In short, one needs to know how to ask in order to learn.
The Building Blocks of a Search Engine
Taking into consideration that Google is, by far, the most popular search engine, constantly growing, expanding and improving, it is best to focus on its way of providing information for the search queries it receives.
Once you type in the address of this website and press enter after putting in some search keywords, you will get exposed to a wide-array of different information. At the very top of the page you will see all the different types of Internet support and compatibility that Google currently offers, presented through a, by default, black top panel. Maps, Games, YouTube, Documents, Calendar, Google+ profile and many other search links wait for your clicks there, directing your research towards a more specific path.
Underneath this panel, there is the search box, where you type in new search phrases if you happen to change your mind. Also, Google has added a voice search option here fairly recently, allowing you to research the online content by voice too.
Moving the focus of your sight down a bit more, you will see ad content. These links are usually the first on the search list and most of the time lead to websites which require registering and paying for information. Therefore, most individuals who search the web skip these, by default, yellow boxes and search under them for the links they desire.
Speaking of the links, every next item on the search list will be arranged according to popularity, which is again ranked by highly rated content and high-quality of offered information, among other criteria. Thus, opting for the first couple of results would be the best choice possible. Here, the titles of the pages are displayed in blue color, with the direct links presented below them, painted green and followed by a black-colored passage or so, presenting a summary or an extract of this page, giving additional information on the topic.
Another thing to pay attention to are the prefixes of the titles your search engine gives you. Namely, if you have “[PDF]” prefix, the link leads you to the actual document, rather than a web page. All in all, these tiny, but very useful parts of your research are there to help you get in touch with the best information for you.
Additionally, there are many interesting features you can take advantage of while using this search engine. Thumbnails, are one of them, showing a front-page image of the website you will open once you follow a link, located on the right side of the text, presented by two arrows pointed to the right.
Also, on the left side of your page, you can see more search options, adding up to the upper ones mentioned a couple of lines before. Here, you can categorize your search content, filtering it to images, maps, videos, news, shopping results and others.
Finally, in the upper right corner of the screen you have search options where you tweak your search engine, making it even more customized and efficient for your individual purposes. Filters are located here, being excellent for blocking inappropriate content. Also, this menu offers many other types of modifications, like predictions, personal results etc.
In addition, it allows you to change the language of your Google interface, search for help and turn on advanced search options, directing your search towards a specific language, country or some other parameters of this type.
The Search Basis
Bearing in mind all the information mentioned above, all is useless if the search phrase you entered is not specific enough. When students use Google, they often want to find what they need fast. But, unless they analyze their potential search phrases before they use them, they might end up with non-specific, vague or inaccurate results.
Imagine that a student needs to search for some information or review of George Orwell’s famous “1984”. This search needs to be organized carefully since simply typing the numbers is not an action that will lead you to any kind of specific results.
After all, there is a film, a year, audio books and many other types of potential results matching the above mentioned search criteria. Hence, typing in something like “George Orwell 1984 study notes” is an incomparably more productive step, drawing results focused on the book rather than on anything else.
To sum up, all the knowledge you need is up there, floating through the seemingly infinite cyberspace.
Ask the right questions and you will get the right answers, regardless whether your queries are related to learning, researching or just having fun.