Search vs. Research — What's the Difference?
By Tayyaba Rehman — Updated on August 17, 2023
A search is a simple act of looking for something, while research is a systematic investigation into a subject to discover or verify facts.
Difference Between Search and Research
Search is the act of trying to find or locate something. Research, on the other hand, involves a more structured, systematic, and in-depth process of inquiry to discover or verify information about a particular topic or subject.
Search is typically the first step in many research processes. For instance, one might search for articles on a particular topic before diving deeper into systematic research. The boundaries between search and research can sometimes blur, especially in the digital age where vast amounts of information are available at our fingertips.
Research requires critical thinking, analysis, and interpretation. It's not just about finding information but evaluating its validity, relevance, and significance. While a search might give you an answer, research provides understanding and context to that answer.
To locate or find something.
To systematically investigate a subject for facts or insights.
Often immediate and surface-level.
In-depth and comprehensive.
Structured and methodical.
Find specific information or item.
Gain deeper insights and understanding.
Can be short-lived.
Can be long-term and ongoing.
Try to find something by looking or otherwise seeking carefully and thoroughly
I searched among the rocks, but there was nothing
Hugh will be searching for the truth
Daniel is then able to search out the most advantageous mortgage
Research is "creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge". It involves the collection, organization, and analysis of information to increase understanding of a topic or issue.
An act of searching for someone or something
The police carried out a thorough search of the premises
He plans to go to the Himalayas in search of a yeti
The systematic investigation into and study of materials and sources in order to establish facts and reach new conclusions
He prefaces his study with a useful summary of his own researches
The group carries out research in geochemistry
To move around in, go through, or look through in an effort to find something
Searched the room for her missing earring.
Searched the desk for a pen.
The team have been researching into flora and fauna
She has spent the last five years researching her people's history
To make a careful examination or investigation of; probe
Search one's conscience for the right thing to do.
Careful study of a given subject, field, or problem, undertaken to discover facts or principles.
To seek data matching a word, phrase, or pattern of characters in
Searched the internet for information about ostriches.
An act or period of such study
Her researches of medieval parish records.
(Law) To examine (a person or property) for the purpose of discovering evidence of a crime.
To engage in or perform research.
To search a place or space in order to find something
Searched all afternoon for my wallet.
To study (something) thoroughly so as to present in a detailed, accurate manner
Researching the effects of acid rain.
To make a careful examination or investigation
Searching for the right words to say.
To do research for
Research a magazine article.
To use a search engine or other software to find any data matching a particular pattern.
Diligent inquiry or examination to seek or revise facts, principles, theories, applications, etc.; laborious or continued search after truth.
The research station that houses Wang and his team is outside Lijiang, a city of about 1.2 million people. File:The research station that houses Wang and his team is outside Lijiang.ogg
(Law) To make a search for evidence.
A particular instance or piece of research.
An act of searching.
(transitive) To search or examine with continued care; to seek diligently.
(Law) The examination of a person or property, as by a law enforcement officer, for the purpose of discovering evidence of a crime.
(intransitive) To make an extensive investigation into.
A control mechanism on an audio or video player that rapidly advances or reverses the playing of a recording.
(transitive) To search again.
An attempt to find something.
With only five minutes until we were meant to leave, the search for the keys started in earnest.
Diligent inquiry or examination in seeking facts or principles; laborious or continued search after truth; as, researches of human wisdom; to research a topic in the library; medical research.
The dearest interests of parties have frequently been staked on the results of the researches of antiquaries.
The act of searching in general.
Search is a hard problem for computers to solve efficiently.
Systematic observation of phenomena for the purpose of learning new facts or testing the application of theories to known facts; - also called scientific research. This is the research part of the phrase "research and development" (R&D).
(transitive) To look in (a place) for something.
I searched the garden for the keys and found them in the vegetable patch.
To search or examine with continued care; to seek diligently.
To look thoroughly.
The police are searching for evidence in his flat.
Systematic investigation to establish facts
To look for, seek.
A search for knowledge;
Their pottery deserves more research than it has received
To probe or examine (a wound).
(obsolete) To examine; to try; to put to the test.
Attempt to find out in a systematically and scientific manner;
The student researched the history of that word
To look over or through, for the purpose of finding something; to examine; to explore; as, to search the city.
They are come to search the house.
Search me, O God, and know my heart.
Systematic investigation into a subject.
Her research into ancient civilizations is renowned.
To inquire after; to look for; to seek.
I will both search my sheep, and seek them out.
Enough is left besides to search and know.
To examine or explore by feeling with an instrument; to probe; as, to search a wound.
To examine; to try; to put to the test.
To seek; to look for something; to make inquiry, exploration, or examination; to hunt.
Once more search with me.
It sufficeth that they have once with care sifted the matter, and searched into all the particulars.
The act of seeking or looking for something; quest; inquiry; pursuit for finding something; examination.
Thus the orb he roamedWith narrow search, and with inspection deepConsidered every creature.
Nor did my search of liberty beginTill my black hairs were changed upon my chin.
The activity of looking thoroughly in order to find something or someone
An investigation seeking answers;
A thorough search of the ledgers revealed nothing
The outcome justified the search
An operation that determines whether one or more of a set of items has a specified property;
They wrote a program to do a table lookup
The examination of alternative hypotheses;
His search for a move that would avoid checkmate was unsuccessful
Boarding and inspecting a ship on the high seas;
Right of search
Try to locate or discover, or try to establish the existence of;
The police are searching for clues
They are searching for the missing man in the entire county
Search or seek;
We looked all day and finally found the child in the forest
Look elsewhere for the perfect gift!
Subject to a search;
The police searched the suspect
We searched the whole house for the missing keys
An act of seeking or examining.
The search for truth is never-ending.
To browse or explore digitally.
Let's search the internet for that recipe.
To probe or examine closely.
She felt a need to search her feelings on the matter.
An endeavor to find someone or something.
The search for the missing child continued for days.
To look for or try to find something.
I'll search the house to find my missing ring.
What is a search?
A search is the act of looking or trying to find something.
Can search be a part of research?
Yes, searching for relevant information can be the initial step in the research process.
Is all research based on searches?
No, research also involves analysis, interpretation, and critical thinking beyond just finding information.
What is research?
Research is a systematic and detailed investigation into a specific topic to discover or verify information.
How is a search result different from a research finding?
A search result is the immediate outcome of a search, while a research finding is a conclusion drawn from comprehensive investigation.
How does search differ from research?
While search is about locating something, research is an in-depth exploration to gain deeper insights into a subject.
Does a simple search on the internet count as research?
A mere search might give you information, but research requires a structured approach, evaluation, and deeper analysis.
Can I rely solely on search results for important decisions?
While search results provide quick information, for significant decisions, it's better to rely on comprehensive research.
Why is research considered more thorough than a simple search?
Research employs systematic methodologies, critical evaluations, and multiple sources, ensuring a depth not achieved by a simple search.
Is there a tool or method specific to either search or research?
Search tools are like search engines or databases, while research methods include techniques like surveys, experiments, and case studies.
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.