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Google & Google Scholar: Google

A guide for getting the most out of Google and Google Scholar with your search

Google Search Tips

A search term + "site:" + a URL or part of a URL search only that site or type of site
A search term + "Intitle:" Search only results with that term in the title
A search term + "InURL:" Search only sites with that term in the URL
A search term + "Filetype:" Search only those file types

Ways In Which Google Acts Like A Database

Ways Google Works Like Library Databases

Quotation marks to search for phrases

Using quotation marks for a phrase tells Google to search for that exact phrase - instead of looking for each word individually. For example:

Google's Take on Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) 

Venn diagram illustrating AND Boolean operator Venn diagram illustrating OR Boolean operator Venn diagram illustrating NOT Boolean operator

  • Google uses AND by default in all your searches - you don't actually have to type in the word "AND."

    For example, if I typed cat dog into Google, it would search for cat AND dog.

  • Google uses OR like other search services.

    If we search for "cat OR dog" in Google, we should get all the results for cat, and all the results for dog. 

  • Google uses a dash or minus sign (-) instead of the word NOT.

    For example, if you wanted to search for cats but not dogs, you would type cats -dogs into Google. You can also exclude phrases (ex. cats -"cute dogs") or multiple words (ex. cats -musical -dogs).


Truncation lets you search for related words that have the same root. Guess what? Google does this for you automatically. You've probably noticed this already. Here's an example - if I search for west in Google, I also get a result for Western

Assistant Librarian

Caren Bertrand's picture
Caren Bertrand
103-A Moon Library