Writing your assignment

The Writing your assignment resource is designed and monitored by Learning Advisers and Academic Librarians at UniSA.

  Start your search

With your search plan complete, you can start searching for relevant readings.  You can use a number of different search tools to help you find information, including the Library catalogue, Library databases, Google Scholar, and web search engines. You are not expected to use every search tool in every assignment – choose the search tool best suited to your needs.  This section will focus on techniques for searching via the Library catalogue.  For more information about how to extend your search by using other search tools such as the Library databases and Google Scholar, visit the Extend your search section.

  Watch the video

  Video length: 2 minutes, 14 seconds

  Key points from the video

  • Knowing where to search is just as important as knowing how to search.
  • Not all search tools will give you access to the same information.
  • Understanding why and when to use different search tools will save you time.
  • The Library catalogue is a good place to search for scholarly material.
  • It provides free access to a variety of resources types across a range of subject areas.
  • Databases help focus your search, have more advanced searching options, and will find resources not available in the Library Catalogue.
  • Google Scholar provides access to a wide range of resources, but not all of it is scholarly. Some types of material are best found using a search engine or a specific website.
  • All resources need to be evaluated before using them.

Explore ideas and start recording your references

The second part of the reading process is to explore key ideas. Your background reading will have helped you to identify some areas that you need to explore further. Also, start recording the information you need for your reference list so that you can find the resources again later. Click on the referencing links below to find out more.

  Referencing links

For more information about referencing, have a look at the Integrating references section.



video  Watch the video

  Video length: 1 minute, 48 seconds

Light bulb  Key points from the video

  • The Library Catalogue has features that will save you time and make searching easier.
  • A simple search is a good place to start.
  • On the results page, look for the suggested databases or subject guides at the top of the results.
  • Use the filters under 'Tweak my Results' to find exactly what you need.
  • An advanced search gives you more sophisticated search options.
  • To get the most out of the Library Catalogue, remember to sign in.
  • Once signed in you can pin different resources and save them to your favourites folder.
  • You can also save a search to return to later and set up email alerts for new resources.
  • The "cite" button will create a citation (or reference) in different referencing styles, but always double check for accuracy.

  Practise using the Library Catalogue

Click on the image below to access a tutorial and practise using the Library Catalogue.

Using the search plan that you made in the Plan your search section, try searching for resources in the Library Catalogue. Experiment with filters to see how you can use these to find what you need faster.

Search the Library catalogue



  Other useful resources