Basic search logic: These tips can be used in most databases or search engines:
Most search engines automatically default to "anded" keyword searching.
Quotations to get exact phrases: "sex roles"
Asterisk to truncate words: chimp* to retrieve all the words that begin with the letters chimp, This will retrieve chimp, chimps, chimpanzee(s). Note that it also substitutes for the lack of a letter: colo*r. An example from Web of Science: odo$r
Question mark to substitute for a single character wom?n (And the truncation symbol for the "Main Catalog" at Princeton.
Boolean Logic: AND (limits) OR (expands) NOT (eliminates)
Capitalization: When in doubt, capitalize the operator OR, also NOT. AND is the usual default in searching.
Nesting, using parentheses, with Boolean logic: [ (chimpanzees OR macaques) mate choice ]
In Web of Science you may use a proximity function: mate NEAR/5 choice (words withing 5 of each other)
Examples of proximity from Scopus (Elsevier): "within" W/n; "precedes by"PRE/n
General order of processing operations: (Most restrictive to most expansive)
Our subscription databases have tips and help.