Distinguishing Between Search & Research

Search and research are two words in the English language that are confusing for students learning English. This is because of the similarities between the two words as both contain search in them. However, search is not research as you look for something when you are searching whereas research is a systematic way of investigation of things to increase our knowledge base. This is not all as there are many more differences between search and research that will be discussed in this article.

Key Takeaways

  • Search is merely looking for something, while research involves a systematic gathering of information to analyze it, establish facts, and reach conclusions.
  • Review and evaluation are integral parts of research, while search only involves looking for things.
  • Surfing to look for something on the internet is merely search, while comparing and evaluating this information later on can be termed as research.

Search refers to the act of looking for something at a place. Whether a kid is searching for their lost toy or NASA is looking for life on a planet, search is the process of seeking information or objects. These days, searching on the internet is often referred to as “Googling” due to the popularity of the Google search engine. However, search does not lead to research; it is only the beginning of the process that may end in research.

Research, on the other hand, is a systematic process of analyzing information to establish facts and arrive at new conclusions. For example, when NASA sends space missions to gather findings, this information is analyzed by scientists to establish facts and reach certain conclusions. Merely looking at the subject matter randomly inside different books in a library cannot be called research. Similarly, downloading relevant subject matter from different websites from the internet is merely search and not research. It is when a student starts to analyze the collected material and reflects upon it, reaching new and previously unknown conclusions, that they can be said to have indulged in research.

Gil Tillard
Gil Tillard
Gil Tillard is an accomplished writer with expertise in creating engaging articles and content across various platforms. His dedication to research and crafting high-quality content has led to over 5 years of professional writing and editing experience. In his personal life, Gil enjoys connecting with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures. His curiosity and eagerness to learn from others fuel his passion for communication. He believes that engaging with strangers can be both enlightening and enjoyable, making it easier to strike up conversations and expand one's horizons.


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