Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Metaphysics: Database Searching

Search Operators


Mandates the inclusion of the words or phrases somewhere in the record.

                        Example:          something and nothing


 Records will contain any one or more of the words or phrases in the set, not necessarily all.

                        Example:          pragmatism or neopragmaticism


Excludes records containing a specified word or phrase. When using “not,” one must put “not” at the end of one’s search statement.

                        Example:          rational not irrational



Utilized to account for varieties of a word.  The database will find records containing words beginning with the word chunk you provide.

For example, a search for epistem* would retrieve records containing any of the following:

epistemiology, epistemiological, etc.

Keep in mind that the truncation symbol changes from database to database.  For example, while EBSCO databases use the asterisk (*), LexisNexis uses the exclamation point (!).  Consult the respective databases' HELP screens to learn the truncation symbol for the given database.

Subject Guide

Profile Photo
Michael Coffta
AL 219
Contact: Twitter Page

About Us 

Chronicle of Higher Education

Renew Books Online

Suggestion Box

Library Fines

Giving to the Library

Request a Purchase

Open Computers

Student Employment

Andruss Library | 570-389-4205 |
©Copyright Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania • 400 East Second Street, Bloomsburg PA 17815-1301 • 570.389.4000