Finding Primary Sources – Reflection

My usual search strategy is Google. I rarely scan more than 4 pages, which means I’m really just dipping one toe in the water. I also look for sites that have curated my topic already – as in the UK Forensic site.

After trialing the different sites I decided that Pinterest and Flickr are probably of limited use, although the board structure is great. You can see at a glance how many items are on each board, which is a clue as to whether it could be worth following up.

My topic is very broad and also very basic. Therefore I need resources that are not aimed at forensic science professionals or academics.

I found Trove to be very useful. You get an instant idea of how many items are available – books, journal articles, images, websites. The summary page also lets you refine your search and one of the filters that is really useful is the Free online filter. This allows access to, in my case, thousands of items. To narrow my results down I decided to put in some specific subjects within my subject area. I tried ‘blood spatter’ as a search term and reduced it further to those available freely online. This still came up with thousands but not 10’s of 1000’s.

I found a podcast on the ABC site that I will be adding to the curriculum page. It is an interview with the author of Blood secrets: chronicles of an online scene reconstructionist. He gives an insight into how forensic material is collected and analyzed, with particular reference to the O.J. Simpson case.

It has become clear that my topic needs to be broken down into smaller topics to find suitable resources for the blog..