Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
University of Oregon
UO Libraries

Text Descriptions of Images in Guides

This guide contains a long text description of images used in guides for web accessibility.

Brainstorming Keywords

Brainstorming Keywords

1.Define your research question or topic
Why? Understanding your topic before you dive into searching keeps you focused on your topic and less likely to get sidetracked by irrelevant material.
2.Break it down – Pick out the core concepts (usually nouns or noun phrases)

TIPS: Try just 2-4 keywords. Avoid “fluff” words like impact and effect

Why? Words such as impact are used often and in multiple contexts, so you are not likely to get relevant results.

3.Identify 1 or 2 synonyms for each core concept

Why? Search engines and some databases can guess what you mean, but they may only return what you put in the search box.


1. What is the impact of climate change on the Oregon Coast?

2. What is the impact of climate change on the Oregon Coast?

3. “climate chnage” = "climate disruption," "global warming"

Oregon =  "Pacific Northwest,” “West Coast,” US

Coast =  beaches, coastline, waterfront

TIPS: Search exact phrases by using quotation marks; Use broader or narrower terms and related words as synonyms

University of Oregon Libraries
1501 Kincaid Street Eugene, OR
T: (541) 346-3053
F: (541) 346-3485
Make a Gift