Strategies for Understanding Authentic Content

Use these strategies to get the most out of the links on this site.

Searching for Information

When conducting Web research, use search strategies that make good use of your time and provide reliable information.

  • Use the search engines’ web domain of the country that you are researching. The following table lists the web domains of some of the countries featured in your program, but is by no means exhaustive. For more web domains, visit the Internet country domains list on and search for the country you want.
French   Spanish
France .fr   Mexico .mx
Québec (Canada) .ca   Puerto Rico .pr
Senegal .sn   Spain .es
Cameroon .cm   Ecuador .ec
Morocco .ma   Dominican Republic .do
Belgium .be   Argentina .ar
Switzerland .ch   Costa Rica .cr


  • Use the target language when searching. Most search engines allow you to specify the language in which you want your results.
  • Choose your search terms. List a variety of search terms you might use to find the information you need. Begin by searching with terms that are neither too broad nor too narrow. For example, if you are researching about food in Spain, España is too broad. You will get many results that are not related to your topic. Use the keywords comida, España to refine your search. Then, you can add further keywords, such as pescado, España, or fruta Colombia, and so forth.
  • Record your results. Keep track of any reliable sites that have the information that you need. Copy the web address (URL) into a document. Make note of the date you accessed the site and of the title and author. If you want to include direct quotations from a website in your assignments, make sure to put the text in quotes and credit the source.
  • Consult with your teacher. Find out if you need to follow any particular guidelines or cite resources in a specific way.