ProQuest® Congressional Help - Using Search Connectors and Commands
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Using Search Connectors and Commands

Search connectors are the logic words used to help generate more precise search results, such as AND and OR, by defining relationships between your search terms.

For information on how the wildcard characters ? and * are used in a search, see Finding Variations of a Word.


  • All Boolean terms - AND, OR, NOT - are case insensitive and if used in the text box will be considered as Boolean operators (unless enclosed in quotation marks).
  • For multiple search terms within a text box, the default operator is an “AND”. For example, Iran and Iraq, Iran AND Iraq, and Iran Iraq will return the same exact results set.
  • To look for an exact match for a multi-term phrase, enclose all terms in quotation marks. example: "Iran and Iraq" will return documents with the exact phrase "Iran and Iraq"
  • To connect a multi-term phrase to another search term via Boolean connecter use quotation marks. example: "Iran Contra" AND Iraq will return documents with the phrase Iran Contra and the term Iraq
  • To find a document with words near each other, use the NEAR/n command. Default NEAR value is 100 words. Example: Iran NEAR/5 will return documents with the words Iran and Iraq within 5 words of each other.
  • ALLCAPS command will return documents with the search phrase in all upper case letters. Example: ALLCAPS (epa) will return documents with the three letter acronym EPA in upper case letters.
  • Quotation marks will return documents with the exact phrase within the quotation marks. Example: "Iran and Iraq" will return documents with the exact phrase Iran and Iraq.
  • Use parentheses to group complex search phrases connected with Boolean connectors and other operators. Example: (("Iran and Iraq") AND (USA NEAR/5 China)) OR ((Syria NEAR/3 Hezbollah) AND ("Russian Arms Supplies")) will return documents that have satisfied the conditions in first double parentheses OR have satisfied the conditions within the second set of double parentheses.
  • The query builder parses query terms from the left to the right.
  • Non keywords (also known as stop words) include a, an, the, on, in, *, ?
  • Mnemonics are as follows:

To Instruct the system to search

Use Mnemonic


Full Text


FT(PQ Congressional)

Publication Date


PD(1998) Note: you can only enter year.




SU(Environmental regulation)

SU(Environmental Protection Agency)




TI(Gone with the Wind)




AU(Leon Tolstoy)


Congressional Source



CS(Committee on the Judiciary. Senate)

Non-Congressional Source



AG(International Boundary and Water Commission)

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