Ashford 3: – Week 2 – Discussion 1
Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Reference the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.
Using the Ashford University Library
The purpose of this discussion is to introduce you to the Ashford University (AU) Library. In both the “Scholarly Versus Popular Sources” discussion and the “Generating Keywords” assignment, you will be using the AU Library to search for scholarly articles. You will find that what makes the AU Library unique, compared to other academic libraries, is that it is purely online. Many Ashford University students have yet to experience this type of library and often feel overwhelmed, and perhaps a bit frustrated, when first attempting to conduct research within it. Academic libraries are often organized differently from public or school libraries, so when first attempting to use one, it can seem difficult.
Note: Before beginning this discussion, update your internet browser by completing the Pearson Browser Check. Once you have opened the link, confirm the following:
- Pop-ups allowed
- Cookies enabled
Also confirm that the following plug-in are installed:
- Adobe Flash Player
- QuickTime (Apple users only)
The Ashford University Library requires that you have these installed in order to ensure the best experience while using the library website and the library databases. Click on the Download box for instructions if necessary.
*The Pearson Browser Check is not for mobile devices.
Prepare: After reading Chapter 3 of your course text, spend a few minutes watching the following videos in order. Each video builds off the other and gradually increases your understanding of how a digital library is organized and functions.
Reflect: Think about your previous experience using a physical library and your experience using a digital library. Then, consider your experience using search engines to find sources. How are the experiences different and/or similar? What are the benefits and drawbacks to each?
Write: Now that you have read your text and watched the three videos, respond to the questions below:
- In your own words, define database and search engine and explain how they are different. Explain what they are as if you are teaching a friend, child, spouse, or coworker about them. Share at least one tip or bit of advice for using the Ashford University Library, in particular.
- Discuss how using a digital library to search for information will be different than your past library experiences. What are some benefits? What are some challenges?
- Do some preliminary searching in both a search engine and in the AU Library for sources related to your research question from Week One. What do you notice about the differences in search results between the two?
To maximize the opportunity for vigorous discussion, you must post to this discussion on at least three separate days of the week and your posts must total at least 600 words as you address the questions noted above. Your first post must be completed by Day 3 (Thursday) and the remainder of your posts must be completed by Day 7 (Monday). You must answer all aspects of the prompt at some point during the week. Also, be sure to reply to your classmates and instructor.
Respond to Peers: As your reply to your classmates, attempt to take the conversation further by examining their claims or arguments in more depth or responding to the posts that they make to you. Keep the discussion on target and try to analyze things in as much detail as you can. For instance, you might consider reflecting on your classmates’ description of benefits and challenges of using a digital library and comparing their responses to your own. You might also share how helpful their tip for using the AU Library was and how you plan to integrate that tip into your own searching.
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