To retrieve the most relevant search results, you will need to construct a search string.
A search string is a combination of keywords, truncation symbols, and boolean operators you enter into the search box of a library database or search engine.
Boolean operators are connector words, such as AND, OR, and NOT, that are used to combine or exclude words in a search string for more focused results.
business AND ethics
ALL of the search terms.
hotels OR motels
|Results contain ANY of the search terms, but not necessarily all of them.|
java NOT coffee
|Excludes results containing
the second search term.
Truncation or wildcard symbols allow you to look for variations of words. They often broaden your search results.
For example, searching on sport* would bring up variations such as sport, sports, sporting, sporty, etc.
Note: The truncation symbol varies by database. Consult the database’s “help” or “search tips” pages for details.
This tool is designed to teach you how to create a search string using Boolean logic. Cut and paste the search string results into the search box of a library database or search engine.
Get More out of Google, created by Hack College, is a great way to learn how to get more out of your Google searches.
Are you finding too much or not enough information? Try using boolean operators and truncation symbols, or use alternative, narrower, or broader keywords to vary your results.