Search Strategies

Develop a search statement to search databases (including news databases), the catalogue, and other academic sources

A search statement includes a list of keywords, combined using Boolean Operators (AND; OR; NOT)

  • AND - this will combine concepts, all of which must be found in your list of results
    • migration AND politics
  • OR - either this concept or that concept (or both).  This is helpful for generating a list of synonyms.  Use synonyms to anticipate the different ways different authors may refer to the same idea.  A thesaurus can be helpful for this
    • internet OR web OR online
  • NOT - do not include this concept
    •  migration NOT bird
    • Mexico NOT city
  • Quote marks - find a specific phrase
    • "human rights"
  • Truncation - any other combination of letters to follow
    • Canad* - will find Canada, Canadian, Canadian's, etc.


Content last reviewed: December 21, 2020