Online course in Tech & Coding

Learning Online: Searching and Researching

Improve your online research skills and your ability to critically analyse sources of information.

  • Duration 2 weeks
  • Weekly study 2 hours
  • Learn Free
  • Extra benefits From $39 Find out more

Why join the course?

In this course, you’ll explore the rich and diverse range of information available to you online, how to use search tools effectively, and the ways in which you can begin to assess information that you might want to use in your studies. Using a wide range of learning activities, you will be challenged to dig deeper and think critically about the information that you find online.

This course is just one of a series about ‘learning online’, which introduces you to the essential skills and tools you need to study online.

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What topics will you cover?

  • Searching effectively online using a variety of search engines and tools
  • Combining information from multiple sources, blending online and offline materials to aid research
  • Sharing research to collaboratively develop a broader understanding of topics
  • Assessing and evaluating information: considering the authority, timeliness and relevance of sources to ensure validity
  • Critical thinking: utilising information and providing context to research to aid the drawing of conclusions

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more

  • Available now
    This course started 3 June 2019

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Assess and record your current level of knowledge regarding searching and researching online.
  • Identify and discuss your search engine of choice.
  • Explore methods of using search tools more effectively to locate appropriate sources.
  • Perform web searches using different ‘operators’ and advanced search options.
  • Discuss the benefits of using a wide range of online sources for researching subjects.
  • Demonstrate effective use of multiple sources to contribute information in a collaborative environment.
  • Assess the quality and appropriateness of information found online to help determine its validity and contribute an example to the discussion.
  • Identify sources which need to be up-to-date and relevant in order to be of use when researching. Demonstrate an understanding of some of the core principles of how to critically assess a source.
  • Explore an information journey and produce a timeline relating to a topic of your choice.
  • Assess your post-course knowledge of researching by participating in the test which concludes the course.

Who is the course for?

This course is part of the Going to University collection which has been specifically designed for students at schools and colleges. They provide a taster of undergraduate study at the University of Leeds and help students to decide which subject to study at university.

Completion of the courses will also enhance students’ university applications.

The courses can also be used as a teachers’ classroom enrichment resource.

Courses in this collection are also great for people that want an introduction in the specific subjects discussed in each course.

Who will you learn with?

Raphael Hallett

Raphael Hallett

Educator, University of Leeds.

I lecture in History, specialise in Curriculum Design and build Digital Literacy and Digital Scholarship modules. I also lead the University's Liberal Arts programme.

Angela  Newton

Angela Newton

Learning Advisor at Skills@Library, University of Leeds.

Who developed the course?

As one of the UK’s largest research-based universities, the University of Leeds is a member of the prestigious Russell Group and a centre of excellence for teaching.

Join this course

Start this course for free, upgrade for extra benefits, or buy Unlimited to access this course and hundreds of other short courses for a year.

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  • Access to this course for 4 weeks

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  • Access to this course for as long as it’s on FutureLearn
  • Access to this course’s tests as well as a print and digital Certificate of Achievement once you’re eligible
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Buy Unlimited and you will get:

  • Access to this course, and hundreds of other FutureLearn short courses and tests for a year
  • A printable digital Certificate of Achievement on all short courses once you’re eligible
  • The freedom to keep access to any course you've achieved a digital Certificate of Achievement on, for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn
  • The flexibility to complete your choice of short courses in your own time within the year
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