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SSW785: Evidence-Based Practice in Social Work: Build search skills

Summer 2021, A. Asher Black Deer, N. Pole, J. Clarke-Mitchell

Boolean & Wildcards

AND:  Use to combine two or more variables; AND narrows your search:
  • substance abuse AND short-term therapy
OR: Use when searching for synonymous or closely-related terms; OR broadens your search:
  • substance abuse or drug abuse or alcoholism or drug addition or  . . .

* :  The asterisk (shift/8 on the keyword) is the truncation symbol used in most databases.  It's a quick shorthand for singular, plural, noun and adjectival forms of words.  For examples, addict* looks for: addict, addicts, addiction, addictions, addictive, etc.

 

Getting better search results using "AND" and "OR" - Rutgers University Libraries (2017)

Brief video (3 min. 20 sec.) features a combination of keywords for problem AND population AND treatment, plus tips on expanding terms and limiting search results.

APA's video (2'24"), How (and Why) to Use the APA Thesaurus When Searching PsycINFO via EBSCOhost, shows how to find specific subjects in PsycINFO.

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