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A General Guide: Urban Studies: Boolean Searching

This Research Guide contains resources supporting students, faculty, and staff of the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs.

BOOLEAN SEARCHING

  • Logic used in online searching
  • Use Boolean operators to combine search terms in library catalogs, research databases, and search engines
  • The most common Boolean operators are:  AND, OR, NOT

Boolean Operator: AND

AND


  • Use AND to connect your main search terms
  • AND limits results by requiring all terms to be present; fewer items are retrieved

Examples:

casinos AND economic development

crime AND poverty

planning AND transportation


Boolean Operator: OR

OR

  • Use OR to connect synonyms or related terms
  • OR expands results since only one of your search terms needs to be present; more items are retrieved

Examples:

death penalty OR capital punishment

funding OR financing

sustainable OR sustainability

Boolean Operator: NOT

NOT

  • Use NOT to exclude a term; fewer items are retrieved

Examples:

government NOT federal

pollution NOT water

poverty NOT United States

 

NESTING

Try NESTING your search terms by using both AND & OR:

Examples:

public administration

AND

(ethics OR ethical)

sports

AND

(economy OR economic)

 



 

 

 

 

 

Subject Guide

Diane Kolosionek's picture
Diane Kolosionek

Contact:
Education & Urban Affairs Subject Specialist Librarian
Health Sciences Librarian
Michael Schwartz Library, RT 110C
Cleveland State University
2121 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44115
(216) 802-3358