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LBS 3020 - Writing the Interdisciplinary Essay

Boolean Searching

Advanced Search Techniques


Search any form of a word by taking the root of the word and adding an asterix.


Example:  civiliz* will search civilize, civilized, civilization, etc.

Example: fem* will search female, feminist, feminine, feminism, etc.

Example: rac* will search race, racist, racism, etc.


Boolean Operators AND, OR,


Narrow your search using AND in between each of your keywords to find articles with all of your keywords included. The more keywords you search using AND, the fewer results you will have.


Example:  social darwinism and rac*

Example:  Frederick Jackson Turner and frontier and progress

Example: Darwin* and sexual selection and fem*


Broaden your search using OR in between each of your keywords to find articles with any of your keywords included.  Use OR when you are searching synonyms/ similar/ related terms. The more keywords you search using OR, the more results you will have.


Example: Darwin or evolutionary theory or human evolution or "Descent of Man"

Example: savag* or civiliz* or barbari*


Phrase Searching

Putting quotes around your keywords allows you to search these terms as a phrase.


Example: "Descent of man"

Example: "Darwinian feminism"


John F. Kennedy Memorial Library
California State University, Los Angeles
5151 State University Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90032-8300