What do you already know about the topic?
Who cares about your topic?
How is your topic portrayed in the media?
Who has access to information about your topic?
What gaps have you noticed in the research? What's missing? Who's missing?
Start by by thinking about the main ideas that are related to your topic. The PICO format (Population, Intervention, Comparison, Outcome) can help you think about these concepts.
Consider using synonyms of your keywords to help find even more information. For example, if you are looking for articles about the benefits of exercise for patients with heart disease, you might start with the keywords and synonyms below:
|Keyword||Synonym 1||Synonym 2|
|heart disease||cardiovascular disease|
Searching for Keywords
Creating a grid like the one above can also help you enter your keywords when you're searching in the databases.
Try Boolean Operators...
One way to keep track of your research results is to use a research log. This way you will remember where you searched, the keywords you used, and how many results you got.