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WAMS Research Guide: Web Searching

Tutorials and links to help you navigate the research process successfully.

Internet Searching

What is a Search Engine?


Definition: Search engines are the tool used to search the web.  Search engines are not sources of information; they merely assist you in locating the information you want.  

Google and Bing are examples of popular search engines, but there are many others available.  No search engine can search the complete Web - it is just too vast - so it is a good idea when doing research to try your searches with more than one search engine to ensure you find the best results possible.


Web Sites and Web Pages Diagram

web site vs web page

This image visually demonstrates the relationship between WEB SITES and WEB PAGES as defined above.

Differences Between Databases and Web Sites

Anatomy of a Web Site


A Web site is a collection of one or more related web pages including a home page, which are linked to each other.

A Web page is a single "screen" of information displayed in your browser  (Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer , Safari) when you click on a hyperlink.  A web page may also link to external web sites. 

A Hyperlink is special highlighted text or an image on a web page that, when clicked on, takes you to another Internet location or file.


URL or address box - a long white box at the top of the web page which contains the web address, often called the URL or Universal Resource Locator.  This address uniquely identifies this web page.

Web Page Title Tab or Web Page Title Bar - Depending on the browser you use, the NAME or TITLE of the Web Page is displayed at the center top of the page and in either a browser tab or a browser bar for that web page.

Home Page - Every Web site has a Home page, the main or "front" page of the web site.  This page usually provides information about the purpose of the Web site and links to the other Web pages making up the Web site.

Every Web site is made by a different person or organization but if they followed good web design techniques, they should contain:

About page - A web page that describes the authority (qualifications, expertise, knowledge, education) of the author or organization that created the web page.

Search box - Allows searching the entire web site (all of its web pages) using keywords to find the information you need.

Contact - A page or link that allows any reader to contact the author or organization that is responsible for the information on the web site or page.

Web Site Name - Every web site has a name, often the same name as the organization that created it.  This is usually the name of the Home page of the web site.

Web Page Name (Title) - Each web page of a web site should have its own unique name or title, that describes the information found on the web page.

Copyright or Last Updated date - The date that this information was created or last modified which allows you to decide if  the information is current.