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Jessie Ball duPont Library

ProQuest One Literature

A guide to One Literature from the provider, ProQuest

Search Tips


Learn about the system search features and how to use special characters and operators to enhance your search.

Search Defaults - Linguistics


  • 2 or more words separated by space(s) such as advertising campaigns are searched with an implicit AND.
  • Put the words between quotation marks (“”) to search for exact phrases. ex "advertising campaigns"


  • If a specific field is not entered with a search query, the default is to search across All Fields+ text (all indexed fields of the full record plus the full-text from ProQuest) or All Fields (no full text) (all indexed fields of the full record, but not including the full-text).
  • LINGUISTICS 1 - Spelling variants enable the search engine to recognize and match differences in spelling between American and British versions of a given word such as humor vs. humour. If you do not want spelling variants to be applied to your search, enter your term in quotation marks " ".
  • LINGUISTICS 2 - Lemmatization enables the search engine to recognize and match different grammatical forms of a word such as with plurals and adjectives. For example, searching for mouse will also produce hits on mice. Searching on tall will also produce hits on tallest. If you do not want Lemmatization to be applied to your search, enter your term in quotation marks " ".
  • These defaults can be controlled by your ProQuest administrator. Users accessing My Research can also change these settings in the account preferences section of your My Research account. Please see the My Research section of this guide for additional information on creating a My Research account and changing preferences.

Boolean Operators

  boolean "AND" diagram    AND

Use AND to narrow a search and retrieve records containing all of the words it separates, e.g. adolescents AND children  will only find records containing both these words.


 boolean "OR" diagram     OR


Use OR to broaden a search and retrieve records containing any of the words it separates, e.g.adolescents OR children  will find records containing adolescents only, children only, or both words.

 boolean "NOT" diagram   NOT

Use NOT to narrow a search and retrieve records that do not contain the term following it, e.g. adolescents NOT children will find records that contain adolescents, but will not contain the word children.

Truncation, Wildcard, and Hyphen Characters


The asterisk (*) is the Truncation character, used to replace one or more characters. The truncation character can be used at the end (right-hand truncation), or in the middle of a word. The maximum number of characters that can be replaced is 9. 

Example: Searching for econom* will find economy, economics, economical, etc.

Users can enter a number to define how extensive the truncation should be.

Example: econom[*2] will find economy, economic and will replace up to 2 characters

Using an asterisk and double quotes together time will not work. 

Example: You cannot search on "econom*" and should instead remove the quotation marks and search as econom* 


The question mark symbol (?) is the Wildcard character, used to replace any single character, either inside or at the right end of the word.
The wildcard character cannot be used to begin a word.

Example: Searching for t?re will find tire, tyre, tore, etc.
Searching for ad??? will find added, adult, adopt


Use a hyphen to indicate a range when searching numerical fields, such as Publication date.

Example: YR(2005-2008)

  < or >

Use the less than or greater than symbols to indicate before/after or smaller/larger or less/more when searching numerical fields, such as the Publication date.

Example: YR(>2008) will located documents published after 2008


*Note: When using the asterisk (*) or wildcard (?) in your search, any terms retrieved using either or thesese are not considered when sorting your results based on relevance. This is because there is no way for ProQuest to assess the relevance of these terms to your research as the term itself is not exact. For example, your search on 'bio*' could return occurrences of any of all of these terms: 'bionic' or 'biosynthesis' or 'biodegrade' or 'biographic.' One, some, all, or none could be relevant to your search. 

Proximity Operators

Proximity and adjacency operators are used to broaden and narrow your search.




Finds documents where these words are within some number of words of each other (either before or after).
Note: You must specify a number or “near” will be treated as a search term, rather than an operator.

Example: computer NEAR/3 careers




Finds documents where these words are within some number of words of each other in the specified order.
Note: If you do not specify a number, a default value of 4 words will be applied.

Example: business management PRE/5 education




Used primarily for searching specific fields, like Subject, EXACT looks for your exact search term in its entirety, rather than as part of a larger term.

Example: Type EXACT(“higher education”) in the Subject field
documents with the subject term "higher education"
Will not retrieve:documents with the subject terms of “higher education administration”, “women in higher education”, etc.

Operator Precedence

ProQuest assumes your search terms should be combined in a certain order. If you include operators such as AND and OR, we will combine them in this order: NEAR, PREAND, OR, NOT.

For instance, a search on education AND elementary NOT secondary would be interpreted as (education AND elementary) NOT secondary. So in this case, (education AND elementary) is considered first.

This search will return results regarding education with information on elementary but not secondary education.You can also use parentheses to control the order in which your search terms get combined, instead of using the standard operator precedence.The use of parentheses and Boolean operators in combination is perfectly acceptable.