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Logical Operators

The general rule of thumb when entering a keyword search of more than one word is to use logical operators ("connectors") to connect the terms:

  • AND. Using the logical connector AND between terms narrows a search by requiring that all terms be present in each record retrieved. Adding AND to a search generally reduces the number of records retrieved.
  • OR. Using the logical connector OR between terms broadens a search by adding terms to the search query. Use OR to add synonyms or similar terms to a search. Adding OR to a search generally increases the number of records retrieved.
  • NOT. The logical connector NOT narrows a search by eliminating records in which the term after NOT appears. Adding NOT to a search generally reduces the number of records retrieved.
  • NEAR/n. Links search words and phrases to create concepts. The letter n stands for a number from 1 to 100. NEAR/n does not specify a word order.
  • To look for an exact match for a multi-term phrase, enclose all terms in quotation marks

You don't have to worry about capitalization in your search terms. For example, both "Los Angeles" and "los angeles" will be searched the same way.

For a more detailed exploration of connectors, see Using Search Connectors and Commands.

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