Now that we have our search terms (keywords) from our last tab, let's use them to do a search in a database!
Step 2) Run the Search
Using AND in databases is one of the most powerful search tools available! Let's learn how to use it in this particular database by following the steps below.
Step 2a) AND
To summarize, AND makes your results NARROWER and so DECREASES the number of results, because it tells the database to only bring back things that mention all the words in the search in the same document.
OR is another powerful search tool that allows you to search for multiple words for the same concepts without having to do searches one by one! It can definitely save you a lot of time when you're searching for things. Let's learn how to use it below.
Step 2b) OR
To summarize, OR makes the search BROADER and so INCREASES the number of results, because it tells the database to do multiple searches at once and combine all the results. In this search, using OR told the database to search for "food AND history AND cookies" and then search for "food AND history AND biscuits" and combine the list of search results at the end.
NOT is another great search tool that allows you to exclude things from your search results. To learn more about using it, please look below.
Step 2c) NOT
To summarize, NOT makes the results of a search NARROWER and so gives you LESS results because it tells the database to EXCLUDE whatever it is you want excluded from the search results. In this search, because we used "NOT acrylamide" the database found all the documents that mentioned "acrylamide" and removed them from the search results.
Filters are very useful tools in databases because they allow you to tweak your results without changing your search keywords. They also allow you to find things in the exact format you are looking for (for example, if you're looking for an academic journal/newspaper/magazine article, or things from a specific date range, or things in a specific language, or things from a specific publisher, etc.). Please look below to learn more about using them.
Step 2d) Filters
To summarize, FILTERS make your results more NARROW and specific and so give you LESS results because they further cut down the list of results from your keywords according to whatever criteria you're looking for. In this search, the results from searching (history AND food AND (cookies OR biscuits) AND (NOT acrylamide)) were returned by the search, and then because we clicked on the "Academic Journals" and "Languages" boxes in the Filters section it further reduced the results to 28 things that are probably very relevant to our project.