15 Lesson Plans For Making Students Better Online Researchers – Jeff Dunn

Google is usually one of the first places students turn to when tasked with an assignment. Whether it’s for research, real-time results, or just a little digital exploration … it’s important they know how to properly Google. Lucky for teachers (and students, of course), Google has a handy set of lesson plans that are just waiting to be unleashed upon the leaders of tomorrow.

While I understand there’s a LOT more to research than just Googling, it’s important to note that this is where nearly all students start their research. Therefore, it’s a critical skill if they’re going to start down the right paths.

Below are 15 lesson plans courtesy of Google designed to make students better online researchers. They’re organized by difficulty and meant to help students (and everyone) become better online searchers.

Check out the useful Lesson Plan Map too to see how all these lessons fit together and what skills they teach. Worth a look!

Beginner Level

Pick the best words to use in academic searching, whether students are beginning with a full question or a topic of just a few words. View lesson

Learn about the different parts of the results page, and about how to evaluate individual results based on cues like web addresses and snippets. View lesson

Apply filtering tools and basic “operators” to narrow search results. View lesson

Draw stronger terms from preliminary search results, identify evidence, and explore using various media to locate specific types of evidence. View lesson

Consider, tone, style, audience, and purpose to determine the credibility of a source. View lesson

Intermediate Level

Identify unique search terms to locate targeted sources and to use “context terms” to uncover appropriate evidence. View lesson

Use the results page to check the quality of a search process, and explore specific strategies students can use to improve their searches and their results. View lesson

Explore filters and additional operators to find new ways to narrow their results. View lesson

Investigate different page formats (blogs, news articles, wikis, etc), and how to identify the right format for the type of information students are seeking. View lesson

Consider, tone, style, audience, and purpose to determine the credibility of a source. View lesson

Advanced Level

Explore “firm” and “soft” search terms, and practice using context terms to locate subject-specific collections of information on the web. View lesson

Engage additional search strategies, such as generalization and specialization. View lesson

Compare results for basic searches with ones that use operators to discover the impact the right operator has at the right time. View lesson

Examine Google Scholar, and learn how to find specific collections of information that will contain the best evidence for students’ research task. View lesson

Track information to a reasonable source and recognize and consider the impact of bias in assessing the credibility of information. View lesson