Internationalizing Research: Google & Beyond

Internationalizing Research: Google & Beyond


This lesson plan is used as the first in every Binghamton Univeristy's Languages Across the Curriculum (LxC) study group.  The goal of the activity is to have students reflect on the ways they begin to research a question and to explore the kinds of sources they use.  We begin by looking at the ways Google personalizes information, and strategize about ways to internationalize students' news streams. Additionally, we introduce a variety of other search engines which introduce them to more localized information sources for countries in which they may have interest.  Since our program encourages students' independent research using foreign language materials, no matter their field, this is a common exercise for each group.


This exercise is intended to bring students' attention to the limits they articifically place on their research by limiting their search options, while at the same time it encourages them to find resources in languages other than English.   Its goal is to have students internationalize their Google searches and to begin to think about the many and multi-lingual resources available to them via the internet and via our University Library subscriptions. It also contains two assignments: 1) students are directed to utilize and internationalize their Google News feed as they begin to think about the limits of Google and 2) a homework activity develops a student-generated list of databases and/or sites (with annotation) for researching the course content in their target language.  The attached acitivity can be used with students at any level and has been planned for a one-hour session.  It is best to use this activity early in the semester so students can add to it as they progress through the course.  Depending on the course design, students can incorporate the materials they locate into classroom discussions, research, or some other project. This activity can be used for groups working in the same language or with those drawing on students' skills in the variety of languages they know independent of the instructor's language proficiency.

Material Download(s)

Material Type(s)

  • Activity
  • Unit/Lesson Plan


  • Binghamton University

CLAC Model(s)

  • Empowered/Independent study
  • Infused

Additional Information

This lesson mentions the "Student Self-Assessment of Reading" and the "Student Self-Assessment of Speaking" which are accessible within the Clearinghouse.