Using keywords

Also known as: smart search, keyword search, search strategies

Using keywords and applying Boolean search strategies are essential for effectively navigating the internet and finding useful information to answer a problem. They:

  • emphasise the importance of educators teaching students not only how to use keywords but essentially teaching them how to break down a question or problem to get the keywords
  • help students to develop and apply problem-solving and research skills
  • support the implementation of research or online inquiry tasks across learning areas.

Using keywords

ICT templates

How to use with ICT

There are some online activities that can be used to encourage students to develop their search skills – A Google a Day is one example. When designing research or online inquiry tasks, make sure the task requires analysis and breaking up before it can be searched. Put a complex question up on the screen and ask students to work in small groups to find relevant research using Google Scholar. Compare results from different searches and discuss which ones are more useful. Use shared documents for group work.

Single computer

Project the inquiry question on the board and work as a class to brainstorm different topics and searches that would find useful information on the topic.

External resources

Find out more resources
Title Link Description
Google Search Education Google Search Education A comprehensive collection of lesson plans and other resources for teaching students basic, intermediate and advanced search skills.
Boolify Boolify A block-based introduction to Boolean search that shows how results change as you refine your terms.
A Google a Day A Google a Day Gamified activity that encourages students to develop their research skills by posing complex questions that cannot be answered with a single search.
Google advanced search Google advanced search Google search with extra fields that scaffolds using some Boolean search options and shows how to use them in the standard search bar.


Links to third-party websites:

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The department accepts no responsibility for content on third-party websites.

Personalised learning

Disability, Learning and Support

When planning to use technology in the classroom it is important to consider the diversity of your learners. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework to guide the design of learning environments that are accessible and effective for all. For UDL guidelines, information and additional materials, visit the CAST website.

Many students require technology as an adjustment to support their access to learning. Adjustments (NESA) are actions taken that enable a student with disability and additional learning needs to access syllabus outcomes and content on the same basis as their peers. Enrol in the Personalised learning with technology online course to help you make more informed decisions regarding technology.


For a range of simple, how-to videos visit the Assistive Technology page on the Disability, Learning and Support website. Resources are organised into four sections; Literacy and Learning, Vision, Hearing, Physical and Motor Skills.


High potential and gifted learning and support

When planning to use technology in the classroom it is important to consider the full range of abilities of all learners. High potential and gifted learners may require additional adjustments and deliberate talent development.  These strategies include differentiation, grouping, enrichment and advanced learning pathways so students can be engaged, grow and achieve their personal best.


Assessing and identifying high potential and gifted learners will help teachers decide which students may benefit from extension and additional challenge. Effective strategies and contributors to achievement for high potential and gifted learners helps teachers to identify and target areas for growth and improvement. School leaders can access the Evaluation and Planning Tool to support strategic improvement planning.


Recognising the diversity of high potential and gifted students represented in classrooms across 4 domains of potential can be explored further by accessing illustrations of practice.


For further support and advice about how to tailor learning for high potential and gifted students from all backgrounds, visit the High Potential and Gifted Education web section, High Potential and Gifted Education Policy or attend one of the professional learning courses on offer.