A Boolean Search is a search strategy that allows you to either broaden or narrow your search result when searching the library databases. It requires two items Keywords and Boolean Operators. 

Keywords are words pulled from your research topic or question to search for resources on your topic. 

Boolean Operators connect keywords together to either narrow or broaden your search result. 

The three Boolean Operators are: AND, OR, NOT


  • Includes both keywords in search
  • Narrows search results
  • Ex: Lavender AND Lavender Essential Oil


  • Includes either keywords in search
  • Broadens search result
  • Ex: Lavender OR Lavender Essential Oil


  • Excludes results with the keyword
  • Narrows search results
  • Ex: Lavender Essential Oil NOT Lavender 

For live examples on how to conduct a Boolean search please view the following lecture: http://recordings.blindsidenetworks.com/achs/97ca68aaa9f140ddf09d3b132c1f76084b3e022e-1489009437492/capture/