You need to use keywords and Boolean operators when searching for materials in library databases.
Keywords describe the main ideas of your research question - think nouns or short phrases instead of whole questions.
Boolean operators allow you to combine your keywords to make your searches more efficient. Boolean operators include AND (narrows your search), OR (broadens your search), and NOT (excludes terms to narrow further).
Watch this short video for an overview of the best way to search in a database:
Video Length: 1:28
Used with permission from the Ronald Williams Library at Northeastern Illinois University.
The Search Strategy Builder is a tool designed to teach you how to create a search string using Boolean logic. While it is not a database and is not designed to input a search, you should be able to cut and paste the results into most databases' search boxes.