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ENV 304A: Cultivating Food Justice: Home

Database Search Tips

Effective search strategies can shorten your research time significantly. Here are some tips from the pros:

  • Use quotation marks around a phrase to inform the search engine to look for exactly the phrase you enter-- for example "genetically modified food" or "food desert".

  • When searching for a keyword with multiple variations (ex. "agriculture", "agricultures", "agricultural") use the root form of the word and add an asterisk (*). This means using agricultur* will retrieve items that have all variations of this word.

  • Be specific: A search for migrant worker* and agricultur* and "occupational health" or "human rights" or "economic aspects" is much better than one for "farm workers".

  • Use the built-in database filters to focus your results! Most interfaces let you limit by publication date, subject, format and more!

  • Finally, ZSR Librarians are here to help you find the best sources for your research assignment!

Getting Started with Background Sources

Before getting started with research, it is a good idea to start with some background and context to the issues you are investigating. The sources below will help you get to that information quickly AND they can help you focus your research topic!

Search the ZSR Catalog for Books or eBooks

General & Subject Databases


Instruction & Outreach Librarian

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Meghan Webb
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News Sources (Full text through ZSR databases)