Skip to main content

Search Strategy

Adopted from the original Search Strategy Worksheet on the HSU Library website

Step Four

STEP 4: CONNECT WORDS AND CONCEPTS

Use logical (Boolean) operators -- OR, AND, NOT -- to connect the words/phrases and concepts which you have listed in Your Search Topic above. Follow Steps A and B below.

Step A: Within each concept connect words/phrases with the OR operator. OR broadens a search by specifying that any of the listed words can appear in the same concept or article.
  concept #1: socialization or social development or social skill*
  In addition place parentheses before the beginning word and after the last word in each concept if you are using the OR operator. This will avoid computer processing confusion. 
Step B: Connect different concepts with the AND or NOT operator.
  concept #1 and concept #2  home schooling and social development
  NOT narrows a search by specifying that a word or concept must not appear in the same article. It is designed to eliminate unwanted words or concepts, but its use can be dangerous since it may also eliminate relevant articles.
  home schooling not home instruction  concept #1 not concept #4

Other Resources