Thing 7: Finding resources

Working through this thing will help you find trusted, relevant and reliable resources online.

Open Badge Information

Open Badge: SSSC 23 Things Digital – Thing 7: Finding Resources

Counts towards: SSSC 23 Things Digital – Resource Hunter


When looking for information and resources online the first port of call for most people is Google. Google searches are a great way of finding information quickly; however it’s not always the best way to find reliable, trustworthy material which is relevant to your learning and practice.


a) Social Service Knowledge Scotland (SSKS).

The Social Services Knowledge Scotland (SSKS) logo, which links to the SSKS website.

SSKS is a specialist online library provided for the social service workforce in Scotland by NHS Education for Scotland.

You do not have to be an NHS employee to use it.

It is an online library, where collections of articles, books, journals and other relevant documents are arranged in collections, relevant to particular groups of staff. As these collections have been gathered by professionals, you can be more confident that the resources you find are reliable, appropriate and up-to-date.

For example, if you need to find information about legislation which applies to people with learning disabilities in Scotland, you can visit the Learning Disabilities portal, click on ‘Resources’, and then ‘Legislation’. If you were looking for information relating to criminal justice services, the Criminal Justice portal includes a selection of digital books, journals, evidence sources and links to key organisations.

Some of this material is accessible without logging in; however to read some academic journal articles, you need to create an OpenAthens account.

Follow the instructions on the SSKS Open Athens registration page to create an account for yourself.

b) Find a resource.

Browse the SSKS resources to find an article, document or other resource which is relevant to your practice. Use the search function to jump straight to content you’re interested in.

c) Google.

If you do use Google to search for work-related resources and learning, we recommend trying an advanced search. An advanced search enables you to get more relevant results. For example, you can narrow your search to only include results updated in the last day, week, month or year.

Similarly, you might be looking for a document in a particular format or language, and an advanced search allows you to use these criteria to focus in on what you’re really looking for. You can find the advanced search option under Settings on the results page after performing a standard Google search.

Remember that there are no guarantees of the quality, reliability and provenance of documents found via a Google search.

d) Blog.

Write a blog post reflecting on the process of using the SSKS website, the article or other resource you found and how it relates to your practice. You should also include reflection on your experience of using Google advanced search.

Image credit: Magnifying glass with focus on glass by Niabot is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

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