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Work Hacks: Google Alerts

Have you ever wondered how some colleagues and on-line posters always seem to find the "best" articles and news to share? No, they aren't better at time management and they aren't getting up at 0400 every day to sift through blogs, RSS feeds or e-newsletters.

I'm going to share a secret with you for how I stay on top of news stories and what's happening in my field. It's called Google Alerts. You create an alert based on key words and frequency and Google delivers an email directly to your inbox.

1. To set up a Google Alert, or make changes to existing alerts, either go to or go to your Google dashboard (see image below).

2. In the search bar, enter the keywords for topics you're interested in and the frequency that you want to receive notices. For example, I have alerts set up for 'university compliance', 'university research' and 'university technology transfer'. You can modify the alerts by clicking on the settings icon or the edit stylus.

3. To learn more about Google Alerts, go to the Alerts help page

And there you have it, an easy way to get targeted news on topics you're interested in delivered right to your inbox.

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