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OCLC Support

Perform an advanced search

The Advanced Search screen lets you construct more complex search statements. Each search string entered in a Search for: box uses a single index. Up to three search strings in three indexes can be combined using Boolean operators (AND, OR, and NOT).

To find information about pollution AND (lake+ OR ocean+), type the search terms enclosed in parentheses in the second Search for: box. You can also enter the entire search string into the first Search for: box.

  1. Type one or more key search terms into the first Search for: box. If you are searching for an exact phrase, enclose the phrase in quotes.
  2. Indexes are displayed in the box to the right of your search term. Click the drop-down list box to see all available indexes. Then, select the index in which you expect to find these terms.
     Note: An index is a searchable file of terms used to point to library resources.
  3. Type search terms in the second and third Search for: box as needed.
  4. Choose the indexes for the second and third search strings.
  5. Browse the indexes if you would like to verify the correct spelling and format for any of your search terms. To access the Browse indexes feature, click the Index button (Index button) to the right of each drop-down index box.
  6. Select Boolean operators (AND, OR, and NOT) to combine the search strings entered in the second or third boxes.
  7. Select limits if you want to narrow your search. In an advanced search, you can limit by Year. Other available limits vary by database.
    • Year format = yyyy (for a year range use yyyy-yyyy)
    For more information on limits, see Refine an advanced search.
  8. If you would like to rank your results, choose an option from the Rank by: drop-down menu. For more information on ranking, see See Select a rank option in Group_Catalog or WorldCat.
  9. Click Search. Review the list of search results and refine the search as needed.