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EGR 112, Drinking Water Treatment Project: Search Techniques

Boolean Logic

Use Boolean logic to narrow, broaden, or refine the search results.

  • AND
    • Intersection
    • Search for two terms or phrases in the same document
    • Example:  water AND membrane

  • OR
    • Inclusion
    • Search for either term or phrase separately as well as together
    • Example:  policy OR regulation

  • NOT
    • Exclusion
    • Remove the search term or phrase from the results
    • Example:  math union NOT labor


  • Phrase searching (using quotations around phrases or titles)
    • Examples: 
      • "water quality"
      • "drinking water"
      • "E. coli"
      • "Water Filtration Practices : Including Slow Sand Filters And Precoat Filtration"
  • Truncation:  Search for variations in a word by using an asterisk
    • Examples:
      • filt*
        • filter
        • filtration
        • filters
        • filtering
        • filters
      • child*
        • child
        • children
  • Parenthesis:  Grouping key search terms/phrases
    • Examples:
      • drinking water AND (law OR policy OR regulation)
      • water filt* AND (e. coli OR "escherichia coli")


Example Search Strings

  • drinking water AND membrane AND filt* AND (e. coli OR "escherichia coli")
  • drinking water AND membrane AND filt* AND heavy metal
  • water quality AND (law OR policy OR regulation)
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