Creating Effective Database Searches Using Boolean Operators: NOT

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Welcome to this Information and Library services tutorial about using the Boolean Operator NOT, which helps to limit search results in library databases. This tutorial will take about 2 minutes to review. 

The Boolean Operator NOT is used to exclude terms or concepts from your search results. 

For the purpose of this tutorial, the research database PsycARTICLES will be used, although the same concepts hold true for any database that is searched. 

The topic, for example, is violence in adolescents--but excluding drug abuse as a cause.  

In the first search box, type the word violence. 

In the second box type the word adolescents. 

In the third box type drug abuse, but choose the Boolean Operator “NOT” from the drop down menu next to the search box. 

The resulting 111 articles will address the subject of adolescent violence, but not as it relates to drug abuse. 

Care should be taken when using the NOT Operator, however, as it may eliminate potentially useful articles. 

To learn more about Boolean Operators as well as other searching tips and techniques, please visit our library Web site. You can contact a UMUC librarian 24/7 for help with any of your research needs. Thank you for viewing this tutorial.

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