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Reading Words and the World - WRIT 120 - Elliott

Google Search Techniques

Boolean Operators are words used to combine or exclude keywords in a search. Using Boolean operators, you are able to focus your search on the results that will be most helpful. Google also has a few additional operators that work to refine results.

Below are common Boolean operators that work when searching within Google and Google Scholar, as well as an example of each.

Boolean (& Other) Operators Example


Limit results


Veganism AND obesity
(Search for content that contains both veganism and obesity.)


One term OR another


Scholarly OR academic
(Search for content that contains scholarly OR academic.)


“ “
Exact phrase


“sleep deprivation”
(Search for the phrase sleep deprivation.)



Synonyms of term


(Search for the term academic and its synonyms.)


Exclude a term from the search


Bears  -Chicago
(Limits results to only those with bears and not the term Chicago.)

From Southern Adventist University's LibGuide:


Want even more search tips? Visit Google's support page!