Deconstruct your topic or research question to select keywords, phrases or concepts. Think of synonyms of these terms as well.
Boolean Operator: AND, OR, NOT, NEAR
- Use AND to connect your main concepts
- Use OR between related concepts
- Use NEAR to find two concepts that are in proximity to each other (an option on JSTOR)
- Put quotations around a term to search for that exact phrase e.g. "migration policy"
Use nesting by adding parentheses around your OR phrases and quotes around multi-term phrases
Examples: (urban OR city) AND plan*
(city AND planning) AND (America)
America* AND (“urban layout” OR “city planning”)
Truncate your word to get more results and alternative endings by adding an asterix * to the word
•creat* = creature, creation, create, creating, creator, etc.
Use a Wildcard (?) for alternative spellings
•wom?n = woman or women
•hono?r = honor or honour
•?nquiry = inquiry or enquiry