Keywords are the main words, concepts or phrases that outline what your topic is about.
Keywords/concepts are used to search:
Health databases have a fantastic range of limits you can apply to your search some include:
Synonyms are words that have the same meaning. Synonyms can be:
To identify relevant synonyms use:
Add your keywords and your synonyms together using Boolean terms
AND allow us to narrow our search.
example: malaria AND mosquito*
OR broadens our search
example: obes* OR overweight OR "over weight"
NOT excludes a term we don't want
example: radiation NOT nuclear
Uses a symbol (usually the asterisk *) to find different variations of the same word stem:
When there is a concept that is a phrase, we use inverted commas (" " ) to stop the words from being separated:
After you have completed your search, look at the results. Do they provide you with the sort of results you were expecting? If not why not? You may need to change your search to give a better result.
If you find a couple of articles that help answer your topic, look at how that database describes them (subject headings/keywords). they may provide some words you should add to your search.
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