Connecting dots for digital learning and teaching

Free Web 2.0 Tools to Support Your Search and Research

Increasingly more researchers are integrating Web 2.0 technologies with research methods (data driven instruction) as they examine barriers and potential solutions for systemic issues in their individual educational practice. However, while there are a multitude of tools, which tools are appropriate? (from G. Andrew Page)

This is a useful and must-have list by: G. Andrew Page, Ph.D. in “Trends in Higher Education” : Head in the Clouds? Ten Free Web 2.0 Tools to Support Faculty Research 

Web 2.0 tools help inquiring minds to examine increasingly complex data and to visualize it in new ways (e.g., Gapminder, Mindmeister, This provides the individual with enhanced appreciation of what they know and what they are learning. You can have your “head in the clouds” and rest assured that you are on the correct path for positive pedagogical change.

To help you get started, here are 10 free Web 2.0 tools along with a brief explanation of HOW these tools support and enhance research.

If you like to find more search and research tools, the following are several references to look for useful search engines for you.

The Infopeople Project is supported by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian. There are best search tools listing for different purposes, search tools comparison table, and more.
To find the best search tool for your information needs, this is a thorough list from NoodleTools .

100 Time-Saving Search Engines for Serious Scholars,  undergraduates and grad students alike. These search engines let them to find books, journal articles and even primary source material for whatever kind of research they’re working on and that return only serious, academic results.

WorldWide Science is a search engine that hopes to make sharing scientific knowledge as easy as possible. Developed by the US Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI), WorldWideScience is a simple website that combines national and international scientific databases and portals into a one-stop shop. It also enables real-time searching and translation of material from all around the globe.

The Link Directory for Google Custom Search Engines has hundreds of links to Google CSE web sites in all areas of interest, you can find search engines that are very specific to your topic for better search results.

13 alternative search engines that find what Google can’t, such as searching music, video, files, cooking recipes, tickets, local shops ..

search engines

Google Scholar is a scholar search tool, in the 45 minute video below, Google Search Engineer Daniel Russell walks viewers through using Google Scholar to get the best results. Google also offers Search Education program through which you can find other resources for teaching search, and best search techniques.

photo credit: kellan via photopin cc


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“Tell me and I will forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I will understand.” -------- Chinese Wisdom "Games are the most elevated form of investigation." -------- Albert Einstein
"I'm calling for investments in educational technology that will help create digital tutors that are as effective as personal tutors, educational software as compelling as the best video game," President Barack Obama said while touring a tech-focused Boston school (year 2011).
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