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CHEM3322: Introduction to Inorganic Chemistry


3. Plan Your Search

Search topic: chelation by amine ligands [then focus on kinetics if the initial results are overwhelming]

Learn About Your Topic

Tip: Start by reading background information on a new topic.

Find background information on chelation in the Dictionary of Chemistry. After reading the definition, what terms could you use to find journal articles about chelation?

Find background information on chelating agents in the Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology.

Generate Search Terms

Mind maps or concept maps can help when you start planning a search. Think about the different components of your topic, and the words or phrases used to express them.

Mind map: central brain-shaped thought bubble connected to smaller clouds of different colors. Some clouds connect to smaller, more peripheral clouds.

Mindmap Map Mind by BiljaST from Pixabay

You can try using generative artificial intelligence, like ChatGPT, for initial suggestions, but your own brain will do better at generating chemically appropriate synonyms, related terms, word forms, and words using alternative (UK English) spelling.

Connect Search Terms

After you generate a list of potential search terms, decide how to connect the terms to each other. Combine synonyms or related terms using "OR," then bring disparate concepts together using "AND."

Check Directions

Check your assignment instructions for requirements unrelated to the topic of your search.

  • Language (usually English)
  • Document type or type of literature (usually journal articles reporting peer-reviewed original research)
  • Others?

When in doubt, ask your instructor.

Access Databases

Use Database Help or Support Resources.