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HIS 162 Sherman

History 162 - Women and History
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  • Tips for Better Searching

    1. Keep your initial search simple—single words or short phrases.  

    1. Look for common database tools (suggested subject headings, abstracts, citation help, emailing and save options) on the edges of the page, often in a color bar above the search boxes or in a separate frame on the right or left of your results list.

    1. Truncation allows you to search variables of a word by typing part of the word plus an asterisk *
      • ADOPT finds just adopt, but ADOPT* finds adopted, adopting, adoptions, etc.
      • WOMAN finds just woman, but WOM*N finds woman and women. 

    1. Enclose your words in quotation marks to create a phrase search.
      • CHILDREN OF MEN finds titles with any combination of those common words.
      • "CHILDREN OF MEN" finds the book and movie with that exact title.

    1. Look for proximity search options.
      • Many CFCC databases offer proximity searching by typing multiple search terms within a single search box (with no quotation marks).
      • Google also uses a variation of proximity searching, giving more relevance to words typed in a single search box if they appear near each other in the results.

    1. Use the right Boolean operator.
    • AND usually links two search terms and assures both search terms will appear in the same document.
    • OR often results in a large number of unrelated (and less useful) results.
    • NOT results containing one keyword excluding any with another keyword 

    Want more information? Try these tutorials from Colorado State University: