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Exercise: 'exploding' out terms for searching

Watch the team explain how you can ‘Explode’ out terms to narrow down your research title & come up with specific terms to use when searching for sour

‘Exploding’ out terms is an extremely useful way of both narrowing down your title, and coming up with specific terms to use when searching for sources.

It also enables you to experiment with different combinations of your terms until you find a title that you’re happy with.

In this animation with voiceover the team illustrates how you can ‘explode’ out your search terms.


After having watched the animation, practice ‘exploding’ out the terms of your own title. We have found that it can be helpful to find someone else to do this exercise with.

You may find it useful to:

  • use ‘sticky notes’

  • create a mindmap (on paper or online)

Do share your experience in the comments below. Don’t forget to look at other learners’ comments. If you can relate to a comment someone else has made, why not ‘Like’ it or leave a reply?

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