I am currently in the midst of (but nearing the end), of my World History course. You would obviously assume that World History consists of a boatload of reading – it does, because after all, summarizing the history of human civilization isn’t a small novel-worth of information. (My point – my textbook has 1044 pages.)
My teacher has an affinity for reading student essays. The course has a grand total of forty (with a 500+ word requirement for each) essays. Not that a normal school wouldn’t have writing assignments… but forty? My school, if I haven’t mentioned it before, is an online high school. Because of the structure of distance-education, writing is critical in determining how much a student has learned. (My point – it’s necessary. At least I’m fairly proficient at writing.)
The issue that has dogged me throughout this course is finding sources for varied papers. My teacher also has
an affection against a hatred for Wikipedia – the one place where information is gathered together in a nice, orderly, categorized way. (My OCD likes order. I, personally, OCD aside, am a very spontaneous person. The two don’t mix well.) I learned quickly that you could go to the Wikipedia article and find the sources from the said article that contained the information you needed. However, the past couple of essays have collectively been a long search for information. Is it bad when you spend more time researching than actually writing the essay?
Yesterday, while looking for elusive articles about civilian conditions before and after the collapse of the Soviet Union, I discovered an amazing search engine! It’s called Sweet Search.
SweetSearch is a Search Engine for Students.
It searches only the 35,000 Web sites that our staff of research experts and librarians and teachers have evaluated and approved when creating the content onfindingDulcinea. We constantly evaluate our search results and “fine-tune” them, by increasing the ranking of Web sites from organizations such as the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian, PBS and university Web sites.
SweetSearch helps students find outstanding information, faster. It enables them to determine the most relevant results from a list of credible resources, and makes it much easier for them to find primary sources. We exclude not only the spam sites that many students could spot, but also the marginal sites that read well and authoritatively, but lack academic or journalistic rigor. As importantly, the very best Web sites that appear on the first page of SweetSearch results are often buried on other search engines.
Does that sound like a winner, or what? Within a half-an-hour, I was ready to type my essay, wondering why I’d wasted a half a day searching with Google and EBSCOhost. (Sorry Google. I still love you – just not for research anymore.)
Why didn’t I discover this before? If I had known about Sweet Search at the beginning of World History, I think I would have saved myself hundreds of hours of research.
If you’re a student who has to write and research a lot (*raises hand*), then I would definitely suggest trying Sweet Search. I found this, and knew that I had to share it… 🙂
Now, I’m off to work on a blog design.
P.S. I am in no way being compensated for this post. Sweet Search doesn’t even know who I am… I’m just recommending their product because of how useful it was to me… 😉