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"Voyager" Basics: Searching for Items-Advanced

All you need to know about the Library's online catalog: searching for books and DVDs, placing holds on items, renewing items, viewing your account, and more!

Familiarizing Yourself with the Options

Voyager Advanced Search Interface


1. When you enter your term(s) in the search box, you can choose one of three options:

drop-down menu

  • All of these = If you use multiple words, results need to have ALL of your search terms. This is considered the equivalent of AND.
  • As a phrase = Results need to have all of the search terms in the order they are entered. This is the equivalent to using "quotation marks" in a Google search.
  • Any of these = If you use multiple words, the results must have one or more of them. This is considered the equivalent of OR.

2. The second dropdown menu allows you to choose the type of search you'd like to do for each search line.

*The two most useful searches for your purposes would likely be:

  • Keyword Anywhere - equivalent to a basic keyword search
  • Title - equivalent to a basic title keyword search

3. The next area sets the limits:

-If you want to restrict your search by year, location, type, or language, make sure to select the appropriate options.

Wild Cards

-To truncate is essentially to shorten. In Voyager, using a "?" after a few letters will include all forms of that "root" word. For example, searching for patent? will produce results for patent, patents, patentable, patented, etc.

-"%" can be used as a wild card for exactly one character. It is used to show alternate spellings. For example wom%n will show results for both women and woman.

Boolean Operators

AND
Used to narrow a search. Finds item records containing ALL of the words it separates.
OR
Used to broaden a search. Finds item records containing ANY of the words it separates.
NOT
Used to narrow a search. Ex: A NOT B. The search will find item records for A that do NOT also have B.
( )
Used to group words appropriately. Ex. (Cat or cats or kitten or kittens) AND (allergy or allergies or allergic) AND (children or child or kid or kids)

-Remember truncation from above? Well I can rewrite the above query to find the exact same results!

(Cat? or kitten?) AND (allerg?) AND (child? or kid?)


*Additional information about Boolean operators can be found here.

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