Synthesis Paper: Diabetes Mellitus

Solid academic research requires the utilization of literary sources to acquire information. Students and researchers can retrieve academic sources from government websites, educational sources, and other research sites. According to Lavidas et al. (2020), the best sources to incorporate in academic work include peer-reviewed articles, government websites, and other authoritative academic sites, depending on the field of study or research. The sources are usually retrieved using search engines such as google scholar, pro-quest, and the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC). In this discussion, information retrieved from google scholar, ERIC, and pro-quest on the search topic will be evaluated and discussed. I will also mention my preferred search engine among the three and share my experience when navigating the three search engines. The selected topic for this synthesis paper is diabetes mellitus.

I began with Pro-quest. The search results were about 214,351. These were general results since I had not filtered my search. The search engine has a feature that can sort the search results by relevance to the search topic. The other feature can filter the results based on the year of publication. Also, a feature limits search results to peer-reviewed results only and whether the results should include full text. General search results included books, working papers, scholarly journals, theses and dissertations, reports, trade journals, newspapers, and other sources published in the last 12 months. Pro-quest also has a feature that allows one to customize the search results dates, language, and subject.

On navigating ERIC, the general search results were 185. They included peer-reviewed and full texts that include the phrase diabetes mellitus. However, going through the first page of the results, I realized most of the results were only related to diabetes mellitus. For example, one of the results read, “Treating Mental Illness among Diabetic Black Male Adolescents: A Review.” Such a result is only related to or has mentioned diabetes mellitus but is not entirely on diabetes mellitus. Thus, it may not provide me with the required information. However, the search engine has advanced search features and filters that can assist me in narrowing down the search to ensure I get the required results. The features include customizing the publication date, location, audience, descriptor, educational level, and publication type.

Google Scholar had 3,150,000 results, provided in less than a second. These results were from a general search of the topic, sorted by relevance. The general search was not customized to select the year of publication and the source type. However, all the sources from google scholar are peer-reviewed and academically authoritative. The first page of the search results included sources that would provide direct information on the search topic. The subsequent pages have sources related to diabetes mellitus. However, they are arranged in the order of relevance. The search features in google scholar include customizing the time of publication, the relevance, and whether the search should include citations.

Given the different features of the search engines, it is wise to incorporate sources from all three search engines, provided they provide the required information and are peer-reviewed (Usta et al., 2021). However, I prefer google scholar in doing my search. The reasons for my preference include being fast, producing straight-to-the-point results, and its search-customizing features. More so, google scholar provides a link for other related sources, thus enabling me to get more information on the search topic. Finally, it is essential to utilize authoritative, peer-reviewed sources in academic research since the information is accurate and first-hand.

 

References

Lavidas, K., Achriani, A., Athanassopoulos, S., Messinis, I., & Kotsiantis, S. (2020). University students’ intention to use search engines for research purposes: A structural equation modeling approach. Education and Information Technologies25(4), 2463-2479. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10639-019-10071-9

Usta, A., Altingovde, I. S., Ozcan, R., & Ulusoy, O. (2021). Learning to Rank for Educational Search Engines. IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies14(2), 211-225. http://doi.org/10.1109/tlt.2021.3075196

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