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Research Guides@Tufts

English 1: Expository Writing: Get Started

Find Background Information

Encyclopedias & Dictionaries online

Select A Research Topic

Keyword Searching

Keyword Search Rules for the Library Catalog and Databases

Using AND/OR/NOT (Boolean Search Operators)

Use AND to focus search and combine different aspects of your topic.

Example: vegetarianism and environment


Use OR to expand your search and find synonyms/related terms.

Example: global warming or climate change


Use NOT to exclude a word or phrase from your search

Example: emissions trading not United States


Additional Search Tips

"Phrase search"  - Use quotation marks" " to search for a particular phrase.

Example:"greenhouse gas emissions"

    Truncation * - Use an asterisk to find variations of a word. Put an asterisk following the root of the word to find all variations of that word, including singular and plural.

    Example:environment* (finds environments, environmental, environmentalist, etc.)

      (Grouping/Nesting Keywords) - Use parentheses ( ) as a way to group all your search terms together.

      Example:(climate change or global warming) and population growth

        See the Basic Search Tips guides for more information, including examples.

        First Year Education Librarian

        Erica Schattle
        Interim Team Lead for Sciences, Social Sciences & Engineering
        Tisch Library