Search Tips

Types of Searches You Can Perform

Keyword Search
  • Enter the search terms in any order.
  • e.g.: The title "From here to eternity" can be entered, as: eternity from here
  • Omit "the" but if "a" or "an" is the first word in the title, you can include it in your search.
  • Enter the search term words in complete form; do not use partial words.
  • e.g.: Enter the title "Gone with the Wind" as: gone wind [or wind gone]
Browse Search
  • Searches are alphabetical by the first word in your search term.
  • Omit initial articles.
  • e.g. For the title: "The sun from Idaho", key in: sun from Idaho
  • Enter full or partial words.
  • e.g. For the title: "Gone with the wind", key in: gone with the win
Advanced Search
  • Advanced searching allows you to perform complex searches that include or exclude specific terms based on what you enter.
  • For example, you can search for "maple trees" but if you did not want "Japanese maples" you can ask the system to ignore the word "Japanese." Your search would look like the following: maple [and] trees [not] Japanese
Advanced Search Operators OutLook Online uses three Advanced Search or Boolean operators. They are: And, Or, Not. And: means the item you are looking for must contain both terms you enter. For example, if you are looking for books on maple trees, do the following:
  1. Enter "maple" on the first line as your search term [just to the right of the word "Search For"].
  2. For each term entered you can leave it at the default of "all headings" to search all indexes or you may specify whether it is an author, title, subject to limit the search.
  3. In the line below are the Advanced Search or Boolean Operators. The system defaults to an And search. There should be a black dot in the circle beside the word AND.
  4. Enter "trees" as your second term on the next line.
  5. Click on Search. The system will display the results of your search.
Or: Allows you to find items that contain any of the terms you enter. For example, if you want books on knitting or crocheting, and you do not care which, do the following:
  1. On the search screen, enter "knitting" as your first term.
  2. In the line with the Advanced Search or Boolean Operators click on the circle to the left of the word OR.
  3. Enter "crocheting" as your second term.
  4. Click on Search. The system will display the results of your search.
Not: Allows you to find items that do not contain the term you specify. For example, if you want books on maple trees, but not Japanese maples, do the following:
  1. Enter "maple" on the first line as your search term [just to the right of the word 'Search For'].
  2. Make sure there is a black dot in the circle to the left of the word AND.
  3. Enter "trees" as your second term on the next blank line.
  4. In the second line of Advanced Search or Boolean Operators click on the circle to the left of the word NOT.
  5. Enter "Japanese" as your third term in the appropriate space on the next line.
  6. Click on Search. The system will display the results of your search.