Library:Library Research Skills For Biologists/Module 4/Module 4B SearchingForArticles/Page 07

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Previously, we discussed identifying your search terms, and their synonyms, as important first steps in finding information. Now you need to know techniques for manipulating these terms.

Combining search terms

You can combine terms by using OR, AND, NOT (known as Boolean operators).

OR/or AND/and NOT/not
OR/or serves to broaden a search by capturing synonyms, variant spellings, or related words of a term. If you wish to find any of the following words in a search, use OR.

AND/and narrows a search by capturing two or more ideas or concepts. If you wish to find both of the following words, you would use AND.


NOT/not serves to exclude a term from a search. If you want articles about bacteria but you're not interested in Mars, you could use NOT.