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Answered By: Rena McGrogan
Last Updated: Apr 23, 2019     Views: 195

Advanced search lets you do more targeted searches, such as a keyword search of Titles, Authors/Creators, Subject headings, Call Numbers and ISBN/ISSNs.

Use it when:

  • you get too many results from Basic Search.
  • you're only sure of 1 or 2 words in a title, or part of an author's name
  • you only want material published in a certain date range, language or format (videos, music scores, USYD Theses etc).

You can:

  • specify that your search words or phrases should appear in titles, authors, subjects, or call number fields by choosing those fields from the Any field drop downs.
  • use phrase searching by putting quotation marks around words that should appear next to each other, eg "united kingdom" finds more relevant results than united kingdom.
  • limit your searches by material type, language or date.
  • use wildcards to search all variations of a word at once.
  •  do more complex Boolean searching with synonyms, or exclude words / phrases from your search results


Use wildcards if you are unsure of spelling or want your search to cover more than one option.


 Replaces a single character.

 For example, wom?n finds womanwomen.


 Replaces Multiple characters

 For example, cultur* finds as culture, cultural, and culturally.

 Library search ignores wildcard characters placed at the beginning of search terms. For example, the system treats the search terms ?aying and *aying as if you had searched for aying.


 NB you won’t be able to have more than eight ? or four * wildcards in a query



Boolean searching (combine search criteria with AND / OR / NOT)

  • Watch / read Search Smarter, Search Faster for more about how Boolean works.
  • Boolean operators must be entered in upper case (AND / OR / NOT)
  • To expand your results combine synonyms with OR eg britain OR "united kingdom" finds either name. 
  • Place synonyms and related terms on the same line enclosed by parenthesis (as per the example below)
  • Make your search more relevant by adding more terms which must appear in every item with AND, eg (britain OR "united kingdom") AND monarch*
  • Use NOT to exclude words which are producing irrelevant results, eg web NOT spider


STEP 1 enter the DOI into Library Search (omit the initial letters in the DOI.  For example, if you have a DOI like, just enter 10.1086/ahr/107.3.739)



DOI article level