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Search Help

Entering a Search Query
Search Examples
Searching
Search Operators
Synonyms
Searching by Fields
Field Names
Date Fields
Cautions

Entering a Search Query

search page screen shot
search page screen shot
  • Enter words or phrases in the query box.
  • Click on "Search" or press "Enter".

Search Examples

Search Query Results will contain
cancer cancer, cancers, and synonyms such as tumors
heart attack heart and attack, as well as synonyms of "heart attack" such as "myocardial infarction"
"heart attack" the literal words "heart attack" must be found
"heart attack"~3 stemmed variations of heart and attack within 3 words of each other
heat~ stemmed variations of heat and words whose spelling is similar such as heart, wheat, cheat, meat, etc.
heart* words beginning with heart
monkey OR squirrel OR mouse any of the words monkey, squirrel, or mouse
monkey || squirrel || mouse any of the words monkey, squirrel, or mouse (same as above)
high AND blood AND pressure all of the words high, blood, and pressure
high +blood +pressure all of the words high, blood, and pressure (same as above)
high && blood && pressure all of the words high, blood, and pressure (same as above)
pancreas NOT cancer the word pancreas but not the word cancer
pancreas -cancer the word pancreas but not the word cancer (same as above)
Title:smoking Retrieve items with smoking in the Title field of the item's metadata. Many fields are searchable.
Rights:"public domain" AND Format:"jpeg" Retrieve items with public domain in the Rights field and jpeg in the Format field of the item's metadata.
Date:[1954-01-01 TO 1960-12-31] Retrieve items with dates within the range of 1954 to 1960.

Searching

Enter search terms in the query box. Click on "Search" or press Enter to initiate the search. If no search terms are entered, the search page will reappear. When specific fields are not in the query, searching includes the Metadata fields, the Documents contents, or both, through the appropriate selection of the Select Database checkboxes seen above.

Search Operators

Operators allow you to customize search strategies. Several operators are supported. Search operators must consist of all UPPERCASE letters:
Operator Definition Example
AND
+
&&
Intersection - Retrieve documents containing all words or phrases (and synonyms) connected by the AND operator. This is the default operator if none is specified leukemia AND chemotherapy
heart +lung
heart && lung
heart lung
OR
||
Union - Retrieve documents containing any of the specified words or phrases (and synonyms) connected by the OR operator aspirin OR ibuprofen
NOT
-
Difference - Retrieve documents that do not contain the word or phrase (and synonyms) following the NOT operator Immunodeficiency NOT AIDS
heart -kidney
" " Multi-Word - Retrieve documents containing the exact word phrase as specified between the quotes (and synonyms) "heart attack"
" "~4 Proximity - Retrieve documents containing the exact words separated by no more than the specified number of words (4 in this case) "heart lung"~4
term~ Close To - Retrieve documents with terms that are close to (similar to) the specified term java~ finds lava
term* Wild Card - Retrieve documents with terms beginning with the specified characters heart* finds heartache
[low TO high] Range - Retrieve items with terms within the range of low to high. A value of * means lowest or highest respectively. [1954 TO 1960]

Notes on Operators

Synonyms

Often there are multiple names (synonyms) for a single concept (e.g., cancer of the colon, colonic neoplasm, colon cancer, etc.). Thus, searching automatically adds terms related to those you entered. For example, when using the phrase heart attack in a search, the related phrase myocardial infarction will automatically be added.

Searching by Fields

search page screen shot - fielded search

Field Names

Date Fields

Date Comparison Operators:

Note: These operators are only available for Fielded Searches. They are selected using the pulldown list of operators associated with each Date Field.

Operator Date Meaning
< Before
<= Before or On (inclusive)
= Only on this date
not = NOT on this date
>= After or On (inclusive)
> After

Date Field Examples:

Starting Date Field Ending Date Field Meaning
1997-03-23 blank Date is March 23, 1997 or later
1997-03-23 1997-03-23 Date is March 23, 1997
blank 1997-03-23 Date is March 23, 1997 or earlier
1997-03-23 1999-01-02 Date is between March 23, 1997 and January 2, 1999, inclusive
Note: The search engine attempts to make reasonable assumptions with date specifications. A blank specification defaults to the minimum or maximum value (denoted by an asterisk * in the query) depending on the which field was blank.

Cautions