Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Broaden student research with Google Books

Do you wish your students would broaden their research beyond a Google search? Perhaps visit the library and see what insight books have to offer? It’s easy to understand why many students avoid books. The effort required to consult an index and manually scan pages for relevant information seems like a waste of time compared to the ease of keyword digital searching.

Google Books removes these time consuming hurdles, making the wonderful world of books a searchable resource. This lets students find book titles that feature their keyword(s), view information about that book and in many cases see a snippet or preview of the information within the book. While they usually won’t be able to read a book in its entirety (unless it is out of copyright), then can often read quite a few pages of text. This may be enough to satisfy the student’s research requirement. If not, they can then seek out the book (from a library or online store), confident that it does indeed contain the information they need.

Accessing Google Books

You can find Google Books at You can also find a Books link at the top of Google search results.

Note: You do not need a Google account to access and use Google Books.

Searching for books

1. Enter a search term in the Researching a topic box and click Search Books. A list of search results will be displayed.

2. Click on a search result to see information about the book and a preview (if available).

3. If the book preview is available, use the search box to the left to search for keywords within the book.

Advanced searching

You can filter Google Books search results to only include books with a preview or full text. You can also limit results to a specific century and filter out magazine results.

To filter results:
1. Perform your search.
2. Click the Search tools button at the top of the search results. The different filter options will appear below.

3. To show only books that have a preview or full text, click the Any view button and select Preview and full view.

4. To show only books from a specific century, click the Any time button and select the desired time period.

5. To filter out magazine results, click the Any document button and select Books.

We hope Google Books helps your students broaden their research to the world of books! You now might like to learn more about the Google Books Library Project or visit the Google Books help centre.


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