Whether you're using the Simple keyword search box or the Advanced Search form, there are lots of ways to make your searching more effective. Here are some top tips to get more out of LibrarySearch:
More search tips
Searching for a Phrase
To search for words as a phrase, type quotation marks around the phrase. For example "global warming"
You can combine both single words and phrases in your search to make it as relevant as possible. For example “information technology” ethics
Note: If you don’t put quotation marks around your search terms, LibrarySearch will find results that contain all individual words in the phrase, regardless of whether these words are located next to each other in the order specified. This widens the search and produces more results.
Searching for any Words or Phrases
By default, LibrarySearch will search for items that include all of your search terms. There is no need to include the operator AND between keywords.
You can search for items that contain at least one of the keywords or phrases you type in the Search box by typing OR between keywords or phrases.
For example, to search for items that contain the keywords Irish or Celtic, type ‘Irish OR Celtic’ into the Search box.
To search for items that contain the phrases renewable energy or sustainable energy, type “renewable energy” OR “sustainable energy” into the Search box.
Note: You must type operators OR and NOT in uppercase letters. Otherwise, LibrarySearch removes them and performs a simple search that includes all search keywords or phrases.
Excluding Words or Phrases
Sometimes you may retrieve lots of results on a particular topic which are not relevant to your research so you wish to remove them from your results. For example, if you only want to retrieve results on data mining not coal mining.
You can exclude items that contain specific words or phrases by typing NOT (must be in upper-case) and then the word or phrase you wish to exclude.
For example, to search for items with the keyword Celtic and exclude any items with the word Irish, type ‘Celtic NOT Irish’ into the search box.
To search for items that include data mining and exclude all items relating to coal mining, type “data mining” NOT “coal mining” into the search box.
Note: If you search for keywords or phrases without specifying OR or NOT, LibrarySearch assumes that you are searching for all the specified keywords or phrases.
Searching using Wildcard Characters
Some words have different variations that you may want to include and rather than do several searches for all the options we can use "wildcard" characters so that LibrarySearch will pick them all up.
You can include the following wildcard characters in your searches:
? - To replace a single character with a wildcard symbol use the question mark symbol. For example, type wom?n to search for items that contain woman, women etc.
* - To replace several characters with a wildcard symbol use the asterisk symbol. For example, type cultur* to search for items that contain culture, cultural, and culturally.
Note: LibrarySearch ignores wildcard characters placed at the beginning of keywords and search terms. For example, LibrarySearch will treat the terms ?aying and *aying as if you had searched aying.
Once you begin to combine operators such as OR and NOT you may need to use parentheses () to group terms together so that LibrarySearch can perform the search query correctly.
You can use parentheses to group terms within a query. For example, to search for Shakespeare and either tragedy or sonnet, type the following in the search box:
Shakespeare (tragedy OR sonnet)
In the above example, LibrarySearch will return results for both Shakespeare and tragedy and Shakespeare and sonnet. If the brackets were not there the search would return results for either Shakespeare and tragedy, or just sonnet.