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Nicholson Research: Finding Information


Keywords, why do you need them?


Keyword Search Strategies

Keyword Search Strategies

Keyword strategies

A Keyword search looks for words anywhere in the record. Keyword searches are a good substitute for a subject search when you do not know the standard subject heading. Keyword may also be used as a substitute for a title or author search when you have incomplete title or author information. You may also use the Guided Keyword search option to combine search elements, group terms, or select indexes or fields to be searched.

Search Strategies


To search by keyword, select Keyword from the search options and type the word(s) you wish to search. Keyword searches can retrieve a large number of results. Several options are available to help refine your search and results.

Quick Limits can be used when doing a keyword search.

Pre-set Limits can be selected before doing a keyword search.

Using the Boolean Operators AND, OR, NOT:

AND: The operator AND narrows the search by retrieving only records contain both terms.  If you do not insert AND between your search terms, it will be inserted automatically by CLIO.  However, you will need to insert AND between search terms if Javascript is disabled on your computer.

  • Renaissance italy is searched as Renaissance AND italy

OR: The operator OR broadens the search to include records containing either keyword, or both.

  • publishing or writing

NOT: The operator NOT narrows the search by excluding unwanted words. 

  • architecture not landscape

To search exact phrases, enclose the phrase in quotes


  • "artificial intelligence"
  • global warming"

To group terms together, place them in parentheses.


  • (residence or home or housing) and (elderly or aged)

You may also use the Guided Keyword Search option to group search terms.

To find a term with variant spelling or endings, use a question mark (?) as a wildcard or truncation symbol


  • child?
  • child, children, childhood, etc...
  • lab?r
  • labor, labour, laborer, etc...