07 August 2006

Enabling Curriculum - Learning at Emmaus

Today we have a group of teachers and teacher librarians gathered for the day to work with James Herring on Information Literacy and ICT.

Participants have brought a range of experiences and expertise to contribute to the discussions today. I am blogging this event during the first session after lunch - Advanced searching and search engine design.

Participants are exploring advanced searching techniques in Google after discussion of options and possibilities when searching the web for learning materials. Try using Google to do a domain search of the BBC site. Google provides a powerful search tool to use for site searches. Don't forget, it is possible to search for specific file formats such as word or powerpoint.

Try this in the Advanced search:

Type in year 7 discovering democracy. Now go to the Domain box and type in det.nsw.edu.au (note that you don't need www). Now click Google Search. You will see year 7 discovering democracy site:det.nsw.edu.au so Google is searching for your information only in that site and nowhere else. This demonstrates the way that complex sites can be searched using the power of Google.

James explains that Google is now the most popular and most used search engine across the world, but we shold not always restrict our searches to Google, even using advanced searching. After exploring Google, participants then worked with a range of other metasearch engines, learning about the variations, and discovering the particular features of visual search engines such as Kartoo , a visual meta search engine. Participants also explored Clusty and Mooter.

Developing advanced searching techniques and understanding the myriad of ways to search for information is a vital part of our skillset. We need to share this information with our teachers and each other.

Thank you to Sharon and Emmaus staff for hosting a lovely day!

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