Lesson 9  AltaVista Searching - Exercises



       You will need to have AltaVista open in a second browser window to refer to while reading this tutorial (refer to Two Browser Windows if you need help).

Exercise 1: Using a Keyword Search to find a Specific Web Site

       You are so excited about the Denver Broncos winning their playoff game that you would like learn more about them, as well as maybe even get tickets to the next game! What keywords would you type into the search entry box? "broncos"? Well, that might work, however, this would also return sites that contains information about "broncos" in general (bucking broncos, ford broncos, the london broncos, etc.). You might be better off refining your search and entering something a bit more specific. Try the following:

  1. Type the following keywords into the search entry box:
    Denver Broncos
  2. Press the Search button.
  3. View the results of the search. Take a few minutes to explore the list of web sites that AltaVista thinks are relevant to your query.
Now, let's suppose after browsing through some of the Denver Bronco sites you have convinced yourself that you MUST get tickets to the next playoff game. What search query could you use at this point to find tickets to the game? How about trying this:
  1. Type the following keywords into the search entry box:
    Denver Broncos tickets
  2. Press the Search button.
  3. View the results of the search. You might even find the seating chart of the Mile-high stadium in one of these sites!

Exercise 2: Using a Keyword Search to find information on a Topic

Suppose you are an art teacher and would like to find some Art History lesson plans online.

  1. Type the following keywords into the search entry box:
    art history lesson plans
  2. Press the Search button.
  3. View the results of the search. Take a few minutes to explore what AltaVista "thinks" is the answer to your query by clicking on the Answer buttons toward the top of the list. Note that AltaVista also provides you with a list of web sites that seem relevant to your query.

Exercise 3: Asking a Question
You would like to learn to play the piano and wonder if there is any thing available online to help you do this. Try the following:

  1. Type the following question into the search entry box in AltaVista:
    How can I learn how to play the piano online?
  2. Press the Search button.
  3. View the results of the search. See if you can find a site that teaches you to play the piano.


Assignment Search Lesson 9 - AV Searching
     Use AltaVista to perform the following searches. Show the results of your search to your site trainer either in open lab, via e-mail, or print out a copy and get it to him/her. Make sure to include the assignment name and number.
  1. Perform a search to find a list of web sites about Attention Deficit Disorder. Provide the list of results to your site trainer.

  2. Perform a search to find a list of resources for teaching mathematics to elementary students. Provide the list of results to your site trainer.

  3. Use AltaVista to find answers for each of the following. Provide your site trainer with the answers:
    • The URL listing the ski rates for Wolf Creek Ski Area
    • Project Gasbuggy was an underground nuclear experiment that occured near Farmington, NM. Find the date that it was detonated.

Next: Lesson 10 - The Limits of Searching the Web
Previous: Lesson 8 - Searching with AltaVista
SCILnet Home
Course Outline
Searching the Web - Basics
Module Directory
SCILnet Trainers