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Discovery Basic Help

Connecting Search Terms

Connecting search terms

Discovery offers the following connecting words, which when written between search terms will alter the outcome of the search.

 AND, OR, and NOT. They must be written in ALL CAPS.



  • By default, all terms in a search are combined with the AND operator. Searching for Travel Europe will provide the same results as searching for Travel AND Europe, providing results that contain both terms.
  • To expand the results set, use the OR connector. College OR University will return items that contain either term.
  • To exclude items in Discovery use the NOT connector or '-' character before a term. When used in the following query Television NOT Cable the results will not contain the word Cable, even if they do contain Television.



Phrase Searching

Discovery allows for phrase searching with the use of “ ”. The query “teacher education” will find results with that phrase

Using OR, multiple phrases can be searched, such as “teacher education” OR “educator training”.

Wildcard Use in Discovery

Searches within Discovery can be performed using the wildcards, question mark (?) and asterisk (*).

A question mark (?) will match any one character and can be used to find ‘Olsen’ or ‘Olson’ by searching for Ols?n.

An asterisk (*) will match zero or more characters within a word or at the end of a word. A search for ‘Ch*ter would match ‘Charter, ‘Character’, and ‘Chapter’. When used at the end of a word, such as ‘Temp*’, it will match all suffixes such as ‘Temptation’, ‘Temple and ‘Temporary’.

Wildcards cannot be used as the first character of a search or within a phrase search.