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Efficiently cutting cards

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How do you all cut cards? What search engines do you use? Do you cut random cards and compile them into a file, or do you cut cards with a specific file in mind? I just wanted to know the different ways that the people in this forum cut cards, maybe to make my own card cutting faster and more efficient. Tips and Tricks appreciated ;)

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Typically, unless cutting politics updates, I'll cut evidence with a certain argument/file in mind. I'll start off with engines my school has to offer. We had lexis and proquest and a few others. Then, I'll go to Google, but start on Scholar. This will get lead you to a bunch of articles in books and other Scholastic articles. If all else fails I'll usually end up going to the Google Search Engine and spend hours upon hours looking at a lot of junk.

 

I don't know what your operating system is, but I use Windows, so I'll be talking about things I do in there. To speed up cutting, I'll have a notepad window open so I can unformat text from the internet. You should also make macros in Word. The click of two keys on the keyboard is certainly much faster than bolding, changing size, or underlining with the mouse. Do it all in two strokes. Also, when you find scholarly articles that link to or have other articles in the bibliography, you will more effectively find evidence in those places.

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Typically, unless cutting politics updates, I'll cut evidence with a certain argument/file in mind. I'll start off with engines my school has to offer. We had lexis and proquest and a few others. Then, I'll go to Google, but start on Scholar. This will get lead you to a bunch of articles in books and other Scholastic articles. If all else fails I'll usually end up going to the Google Search Engine and spend hours upon hours looking at a lot of junk.

 

I don't know what your operating system is, but I use Windows, so I'll be talking about things I do in there. To speed up cutting, I'll have a notepad window open so I can unformat text from the internet. You should also make macros in Word. The click of two keys on the keyboard is certainly much faster than bolding, changing size, or underlining with the mouse. Do it all in two strokes. Also, when you find scholarly articles that link to or have other articles in the bibliography, you will more effectively find evidence in those places.

 

So the notepad thing is now unnecessary. In Word 2007 or 2010 just click options, then go to the "advanced" section there is a set of options called "Cut, Copy, and Paste" Under "pasting from other programs" click "keep text only". This will do the same thing clearing all formatting and any picture when cutting cards from the web.

 

The other thing that helps you cut cards is to cut whole articles at one time. Even if an article has cards for multiple files you can easily re-use the cite and cut cards more efficiently this way.

 

I think the most important thing for cutting cards efficiently is to find one really good scholarly article and then use all the relevant footnotes or end notes to find other good articles on the topic.

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So the notepad thing is now unnecessary. In Word 2007 or 2010 just click options, then go to the "advanced" section there is a set of options called "Cut, Copy, and Paste" Under "pasting from other programs" click "keep text only". This will do the same thing clearing all formatting and any picture when cutting cards from the web.

 

Alternatively, most templates have a paste special function built in. For example, the whitman template maps control+G to paste text without formatting.

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The best way to get good cards is to know what you want beforehand, i.e. SKFTA will pass soon. This makes it a ton easier to find articles. Use databases wherever you can get them. School's have some, local libraries, local small universities ( if you take a class over the summer) often will give you a semester's use of their databases because you're still a student, some camps do this if they offer college credit for camp (like UMKC). Download Synergy or the Whitman Template. It has way too many shortcuts not to take advantage of. Organize with your team who enjoys cutting what. Cutting cards about econ and heg are awesome to me, but my partner hates it. Try and cut stuff you like as much as possible, it makes the reading easier because you'll like what you're reading instead of simply scanning for info about random craziness.

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