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COM ARTS 272: Introduction to Interpersonal Communication (Fall 2021) : Database Search Strategies

Database Search Strategies

This tutorial shows you how to use database search strategies such as AND, OR, quotation marks, and truncation.

Searching Within Databases

This tutorial shows you how to search for articles in article databases.  It shows you how to use AND to combine terms, limit to articles from scholarly journals or by date of publication, use subject headings and abstract to find keywords, find full text of articles, and use tools to generate or export citations. 

Searching in Google Scholar

This tutorial shows you how to use search strategies in Google Scholar to find relevant results effectively and efficiently.  It explains the"cited by" tool and how to search within cited articles.

Search Tips

  • Use AND to combine different words to find all those words, in any order.  
    • friends AND communication
  • Use OR to combine similar words or synonyms 
    • friends OR peers
  • Use quotation marks ( " ") to search words as a phrase
    • "interpersonal communication"
  • Use an asterisk ( * ) to find varied endings of words and singular and plural forms.
    • friend* to find friend, friends, or friendships
  • Look at Subjects to find additional keywords and use them to find relevant and specific results.
  • Look for an option to limit to Scholarly Journals on the left side of search results in most databases