Using the Internet for Your College Courses
There is a ton of information available on the Internet, and knowing how to find exactly what you need can save you time and frustration. When doing research through any type of online search, it is important to use specific terms and avoid being too broad.
A good place to start looking for info online is the OCCC Keith Leftwich Memorial Library site. The Article search is a great place to find scholarly articles on a variety of topics, and you can also find out what books the library has available on the Find Books page.
Don’t Trust Everything You Find!
“Don't believe anything you read on the net. Except this. Well, including this, I suppose.”
– Douglas Adams
There’s a lot of Information on the Internet, but not all of it is good information! You should always evaluate the source of information to help determine if it is trustworthy or will make a good source. This guide from the OCCC Library will help you evaluate sites you find on the web.
Tools to Reduce Online Distractions
Let’s face it, there’s a lot of cool, entertaining, and distracting stuff on the Internet. These tools can help limit distractions to keep you focused on the task at hand!
- StayFocusd – A plugin for the Chrome browser that limits your access to time wasting sites. Set the amount of time you wish to work, and this plugin will make sure you don’t waste it on YouTube!
- Take a Five – A free resource you can use to give yourself a time-limited break! Simply select how long your break should be and which site you want to visit. Once the time is up the site will close automatically – time to get back to work!
- Tomato-Timer – This free, online timer can help you structure your time online to be as effective as possible.
Staying Safe Online
Avoid suspicious sites!
A site that is offering something expensive for free or at an unbelievable price could be a scam. If you are not 100% percent sure that a site is legitimate it is best to avoid it, and especially to avoid sharing information such as your email address or phone number with the site.
Watch what you download!
Downloading files from unsafe sources is the fastest way to install a virus on your computer. If a website prompts you to download a file that you did not ask for, or if you are not sure if the file is what you wanted, do not download it.
Stay away from ads!
Use an Ad-blocking software such as Adblock Plus or uBlock to prevent ads from loading, and reduce the risk of loading harmful links and other content in your browser.
Here are some additional tips for email safety.
Use an Anti-Virus program!
Regularly running an anti-virus program such as Avast!, along with Windows Defender can help ensure your computer remains virus free.
A Note About Plagiarism
It is very easy to Copy and Paste information from the Internet, but if you turn in this copied content as your own work you could end up getting a zero on your assignment, or worse! Things such as submitting work that you copied or borrowed from others is considered a violation of OCCC’s Academic Integrity Policy. Also, you should be aware that some of your instructors will be using Turnitin or other plagiarism detection methods, so it isn’t worth it to even try to pass other’s work as your own.