The quick search box is on every page. It works just like other search engines, like Google search:
- Put in a word to find just that word (and simple variants: search for cat and you will also find cats.)
- Put in more than one word and you will find pages that contain any of those words (the ones that contain most of them should be the top results).
- Put in a phrase (enclose the phrase in quotation marks: “just like this”) and you will find only pages containing that phrase.
Run your search by hitting return or clicking the magnifying glass icon to the right of the search box.
The main part of the search results page contains your search results, divided into two parts, each on its own tab:
- The BOOKS tab shows you what complete VSIs you have found with your search – for example, if you searched for its title, or a search term that was appropriate to the whole book; and
- The CHAPTER tab shows you what chapters you have found with your search – for example if you searched for a word that appears in the full text of that chapter, or in the indexing data for that chapter. The CHAPTER tab is the default.
Click on either tab to see your chapter and books search results list.
- The list is ordered by relevance, with the best results at the top. Use the Sort by options at the top of the list to sort by the author name or publication date instead.
- You can choose to increase the number of Items per page with the box at the top of the list.
- Long lists will be broken over several pages. Use the Page links at the top right of the list to move from page to page
Each result on the CHAPTER tab shows you the chapter, the VSI it comes from, and a snippet of text showing how your search term appears – this can help you choose whether you want to see the whole result. Click on the chapter name to see the full text of the chapter, or click on the VSI title to go to that book.
Once you've gone to full content, you can return to your results list, or move through it, using the arrows and Back to results on the left below the header.
Refining your results list
On the left of your results list you’ll find features to help you find what you want in that list.
- Availability: your library may not have subscribed to all the VSIs. Open the Availability widget by clicking the little triangle and then check the Show full text results only box to limit what you see to just what you have access rights to.
- Enter a word of phrase in the Search within results box to run a quick search just through the books or chapters in your results list.
- Narrow your choices by choosing a subject. In this pane you’ll see the same subject taxonomy as in the subject browse panel – but in more detail, so you can choose to explore more precisely.
- Each topic shows you the number of VSIs on that topic (in brackets.)
- Click on the + signs to expand each branch of the taxonomy, the – signs to hide the sub-branches, and click on each term to choose it.
Gone too far?
The grey panel at the top of the main list shows you the search terms and filters that are being used to make your results list. You can always remove a filter by clicking on the x next to it, or Clear All and start again.
Using the results list
You can save a search results list as a PDF file; or you can print it out, email it, or share it via a social media site – use the icons at the top right of the list.
For precise or complicated searches follow the Advanced Search link above the Quick Search box to the Advanced search page. You can also use wildcards to improve your searching.
Advanced search lets you specify exactly what you are looking for: choose one of the values in the drop down on the left, and enter a term in the field on the right. For example, if you want to find the VSI by Michael Green, choosing Author from the drop down and entering Green in the entry field will take you to the VSI without any noise from other appearances of the words Michael and green.
Further, you can combine as many terms, in as many different sections, as you like. Use another row, and if you need a further row, choose Add Row.
When you add another row, your searches are by default AND together (in other words, all your results must be results of all your searches), but you can change this to OR or NOT in the dropdown on the left.
If you like, you can type the Boolean operators AND, OR, or NOT directly into the quick search field, so typing cat NOT asleep finds all documents that contain the word cat but not the word asleep.
Wildcards are characters that represent one or more letter, and you can use them in any search box.
- ? can stand for any single letter.
- A search for c?t finds cat, cot, and cut.
- * stands for one or more letters (or no letters)
- A search for do* finds do, dog, document, documentary, and many many other words.