Many of you may have felt the pain of pouring over the books, websites, and journal articles to research a topic and answer questions that are not there. In reality, the academic world has changed a lot. The dynamics of researching a topic and answering the research questions also have changed. Now, there are advanced research techniques that you need to learn to collect the right and relevant information for your master’s dissertation topic. I know you are thinking about those techniques desperately. Have some patience because, in today’s article, I am going to unfold those techniques one by one. However, before that, let’s explain why you need to practice advanced research techniques.
Why do you need advanced research techniques?
Research is a systematic investigation of the available sources to collect and establish facts related to an issue or topic. In reality, research is a highly specialised skill and requires proper methodology in mind. Old research methods like exploring books and the internet are not much applicable today. The reason is that things have transformed into online mode. The online mode of research requires you to identify the right set of questions before your start the research process. Hence, it is why you need to know advanced techniques for researching topics.
What are advanced research techniques? Describe briefly.
Advanced research techniques are the techniques that require you to exercise advanced methods for researching topics. From the discussion above, it is now pretty clear why you need to apply these techniques. So, it is now time to disclose those research techniques. Hence, a brief description of all the techniques is as follows:
1. Phrase searching
The first technique is called phrase searching. In this technique, you search the separate words by making them a phrase. Enclosing the words with quotation marks make the separate words a phrase, and the search engines show you results that contain exactly the quoted words. For example, you are searching for gun control legislation. In this scenario, quoting the words “gun control” gives you more accurate and relevant results than searching gun and control separately. So, try out this phrase searching advanced research technique in your dissertation. You can hire a masters dissertation writing service if you can’t do at your own.
It is the second advanced technique, and its meaning is quite clear from its name. The truncation process of researching information for a master’s dissertation includes shortening the whole topic into fewer words. Those fewer words are called keywords. The search engines pick the keywords very quickly and show you results or articles containing those keywords. For example, your research topic is “Effects of community gardening and urban agriculture on the environment.” Here, instead of searching the whole topic, you can search using “Community Gardening” or “Urban agriculture.”
3. Quick Searches
Many search engines now offer quick searches. How? Machine learning and artificial intelligence have too far that now you do not even need to insert the whole topic into the search bar. Just right the first two to three words and leave the rest to the search engine. For example, if your dissertation is on the changing climate in Europe, and you want to get data on the weather in Paris for the last 20 years. You do not need to write the whole term. Just write “Paris weather 20 years.” So, this is how quick search techniques work. The image search technique also comes under this category.
4. Using Boolean operators
Using Boolean operators like AND, OR, and NOT is one of the advanced research techniques currently in practice. These operators link your search terms together and give you more promising results than you could get by searching the whole topic. The function of these operators is as follows:
AND narrows down the search results
OR broadens the research area
NOT narrows the search by excluding some terms
For example, the topic of your dissertation is “Women in combat: Summary of findings and a way ahead.” When you search this whole topic, you may get irrelevant information too. So, search it with AND operator. For example, “women and military” could be a good term to research this topic.
5. Exclude specific sites from your search
It is now a quite established fact that not every type of information on the internet is right or authentic. Encountering false information or forged data to serve propaganda is common on the internet. So, to combat this problem, many search engines now offer the feature of excluding websites you do not want to see in the search results. For example, when writing your master’s dissertation, your teacher has stopped you from using the information present on the Wikipedia pages. In such a case, using the “Atari –site:wikipedia.com” after the topic will exclude the Wikipedia pages related to your search from the search results. You can exclude as many sites as you want using this command. So, excluding the websites is a new and advanced research technique.
6. The “Tags” approach to searching the information
It is my favourite and one of the most used advanced research techniques in terms of collecting information on current issues. The tagging approach of research is about using social media tags like @ or # to search the topic on the internet. It is obvious that in today’s technological advanced world, nothing is hidden from social media. So, using such tags can be very helpful in performing the right type of search. For example, suppose your dissertation is on food scarcity problems that the world could face due to the war between Russia and Ukraine. In that case, you can search the data using tags like #ukrainewar or #russiainukraine.
Conclusively, using all these terms while researching for a master’s dissertation can seem laborious. However, believe me, by practising the above-mentioned advanced research techniques, you can gather the most relevant data for your dissertation. So, read the information above and practice all the techniques one by one so that you can know how effective they are.