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EBSCOhost databases

Guide to using EBSCOhost databases

Advanced Search

When you first open any EBSCOhost database the Advanced Search screen is displayed as the default. This is the best search option for carrying out a thorough search and to develop a systematic search strategy.

Screenshot of EBSCOhost advanced search boxes

Enter your search terms in the boxes at the top of the screen (the database will suggest terms as you start typing). You can choose to search in particular fields such as subject terms or abstract. If you select All Text the database will search the whole text of articles, so you are likely to get a lot of irrelevant results. Use the plus button if you want to add more boxes.

There are additional Search Options further down the screen: 

Screenshot of EBSCOhost search options

  • Boolean/phrase means you can use search operators like AND, OR and NOT, and quotation marks to search for an exact phrase.
  • SmartText Searching (not available for all databases): You can copy and paste large chunks of text (such as an article abstract) into the search box (which will get bigger when you select this option). The database picks out the most relevant search terms and then conducts a search.   
  • Apply related words and Apply equivalent subjects will expand your search to include synonyms of your search terms.
  • You can limit your results in various ways, for example by date or publication type. The Linked Full Text option is not recommended as that will limit your search to results that have full text available within the database; you might have access to the full text via another route. Some limiters are unique to the database being searched