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LiONiL: Library Instruction Online for Information Literacy

Module 3: Searching for Articles in Online Databases

Boolean search operators: AND, OR, NOT

Boolean operators are connectors that allow you to combine two or more search terms or phrases in a search strategy. By using Boolean operators you can create a very broad search or a very narrow search.

You should use Boolean operators when you set up search strategies in periodical databases, combine search terms in the Kraemer Library Catalog or the Prospector database, or even when you search on Google or other search engines.

The most commonly used Boolean operators are AND, OR, and NOT. By using a combination of keywords and Boolean operators, you will improve the results of your searches. On the next three screens you will learn what each operator does.