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HIP100 Research Skills Guide: Search Techniques

General Search Tips

The following search tips can help you to find more relevant results in Primo Search and most library databases:

What you can do Example
Use AND to retrieve results that contain both of your search terms. obesity AND australia
Use OR to retrieve results that contain any or all of your search terms. obesity OR overweight

Combine terms with round brackets to create complex searches.


Alternatively, use separate lines of search.

(obesity OR overweight) AND australia


obesity OR overweight

[AND] australia

Use quotation marks to search for a phrase

[applies in most search tools, including Primo Search and EBSCOhost databases]

"cardiac disease"
Use the asterisk to search for terms with different word endings ("truncation") australia* = australia, australian, australia's

Change the default search so that you are searching only in a specific field.
You normally do this using a drop-down menu that appears beside the search box.

"cardiac disease" AND australia*
[in TI Title]


Get better search results

Further Help With Searching

For more help with online searching, see:

  • the Library's Database Help guide
  • Help screens within the databases or databases platforms.