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Glossary Item Box

Advanced search: database specific

Create a search that is as precise as you need it to be.

  1. In the first row, enter one or more words in the box.
    Following the box is a dropdown of search fields. Search fields are discrete bits of indexed information—such as Author, Document title, or Subject heading—about individual documents.
  2. Select from the list, or accept the default All fields + text.
  3. Click Search.
    ProQuest will search for your word(s) in the selected search fields.

When you select All fields + text, ProQuest looks for your words (search terms) in the following document information:

Important to know: One of the fields in the list included with All fields + text is Document text, meaning that ProQuest will search the full text of documents for your search terms.

All fields (no full text)

The search field All fields (no full text) - ALL searches the same fields listed above for All fields + text, but does not search full text.

Autocomplete -- search term suggestions as you enter your search

If enabled by your administrator, autocomplete provides suggestions from previously successful searches by ProQuest users. The list changes as you type, to match previous searches that start with what you have entered at any point. Click any term in the list to immediately search for that term.

You can click the Turn off auto-complete link to disable search term suggestions for your current ProQuest session.

Taking it further

Use operators to specify relationships between your search terms

The second and third rows of the Advanced Search form begin with a dropdown menu of search operators. Insert operators between search terms to specify relationships that tell ProQuest how to interpret and run your search.

Operators in the list are:

See Search Tips for a complete list of operators that you can use in other ProQuest search methods, including Basic Search and Command Line Search.

After the first row, each row begins with a dropdown of available operators. In the second row, the selection you make from the list will establish a relationship between the word you entered in the first row, and any word that you enter in the box in the second row. For example, you might enter environment in the box in the first row, select Subject heading (all) from the search field dropdown, accept the default AND operator at the beginning of the second row, enter petroleum in the second box, and select Document text from the search field dropdown at the end of the second row.

Enter terms and make more dropdown selections in the third row to make your search even more precise.

Use the Add a row link to do just that, add a row to the default set of three rows. Use the Remove a row link to remove rows you’ve added beyond the default three.

Find out what databases you’re searching

Information about what databases you are currently searching is displayed in the blue bar at the top of the ProQuest window. Here’s an example of how it looks:

You are searching: 81 databases (See list | Change >>)
Use the links to view the current list and select or deselect databases.

Two tabs at the bottom of the page

At the bottom of the page, beneath the search boxes, are two tabs:

Limit your search -- search options

If it isn’t already active, click the Show more link to access additional limiters available for your selected databases.

Some or all of the options described below can be turned on or off—meaning they display or don’t display—by your librarian or ProQuest administrator. Some options also may not be applicable to all databases. Check with your librarian or administrator if you’re curious about one of these options, but don’t see it while using ProQuest.

Duplicates — Duplicates (duplicate documents) arise when the same document is available from multiple selected databases. When you select the checkbox labeled Include duplicate documents, ProQuest will retrieve records for each database in which it found the document. Your results list will provide links to each of the documents. If you leave the checkbox deselected (the default state), ProQuest returns the document from a single database only.

Important to know — When you leave the duplicates checkbox deselected, the following heading displays in the right column on your Results page after you run your search:Duplicate document settings.

Click the Change link to display a page titled Duplicate Documents — Order Preference. On this page you can specify your preferred databases when ProQuest encounters duplicates when you search. Learn more

Thesaurus subject terms

Most databases have an associated thesaurus (also called a controlled vocabulary of subject terms). Using these thesauri, editors assign one or more subject headings to each document in each database. With a thesaurus opened, you can browse subject terms, or select one or more to add to your search. Click the Thesaurus link above the search fields dropdown to display a list of available thesauri for your currently selected database.

More ways to do an Advanced Search

Use the Advanced Search dropdown menu in the main navigation

Click the down arrow next to Advanced in the main navigation to access these other advanced ways to search:

Recent searches and sets in ProQuest Dialog

As you run searches in ProQuest Dialog, each search—also called a set—during your current session is recorded on the Recent searches tab. Your searches are listed in reverse chronological order—most recent to oldest. A control lets you reverse the order. Each listed recent search has a corresponding set number—S1, S2, etc. You can use the corresponding set numbers (or the original search terms) to combine and rerun searches. For example, if your first search was for medicine, and your second search was for polio, you could combine the two searches into a single string on the Basic Search, Advanced Search, or Command Line Search pages as either:

medicine AND polio
s1 AND s2

Both searches will find the same results.

Learn more

Check out these Search Tips to learn about using search fields, operators, wildcard characters, truncation characters, and more.


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