To improve the quality of your search results, consider trying:
- Using a wildcard searches more than one form of the word.
- famil* searches family, families, familial, familiar, etc.
- Most common is *.
- Two exceptions for UK Libraries are:
- InfoKat uses a question mark (?)
- LexisNexis uses an exclamation point (!)
- Quotation Marks - keep 2 or more words together as a phrase.
- "kinship system" searches for the phrase kinship system, not the word kinship by itself and not the word system by itself.
- Boolean Operators - broaden/narrow searches
- AND narrows a search
- Cats AND dogs yields results that are each about both cats and dogs.
- OR searches any of the terms
- Cats OR dogs for searches for sources about cats and sources about dogs.
- NOT excludes term(s) following NOT
- Cats NOT dogs will provide results about cats that don't include results about dogs.
If you are not sure how something works, use the help or tips screen on the database, or contact a reference librarian at firstname.lastname@example.org or (859) 218-2048..
(borrowed from Valerie Perry's Agriculture Research Guide)