Last Updated: Jan 12, 2022     Views: 5

Digital Collections has a search bar and an Advanced Search form.

Modifiers and wildcards help to refine your search in the search bar.

List of Search Modifiers and Wildcards*
Modifier / Wildcard Description Example
AND

AND
is the default modifier. This allows you to search for all values entered in the Search Bar.


To use the AND modifier, insert AND between terms. Since this is the default modifier, you can also simply use a space.

  • Calgary AND horse
  • Calgary horse

Result: items containing "Calgary" and "horse" in searchable fields are displayed

NOT  

NOT allows you to exclude certain terms. This can be combined with the AND and OR modifiers.

To use the NOT modifier, insert NOT between the terms that should be excluded. Include a space before and after “NOT”.
 
  • Calgary NOT horse
Result: items containing "Calgary" but not "horse" in searchable fields are displayed
OR  

OR allows you to separate terms and search for any listed.

To use the OR modifier, insert OR between terms. Include a space before and after “OR”.
  • Calgary OR horse

Result: items that contain "Calgary" or "horse" in searchable fields are displayed

( )  

Parentheses ( ) allow you to perform advanced boolean searches. This can be combined with modifiers and wildcards.

To use the parentheses modifier, insert ( ) around the terms to include.
 
  • horse AND (Calgary OR Cochrane)
Result: items that contain "Calgary" or "Cochrane" but also include horse in searchable fields are displayed
" "  

Quotation marks " " allow you to perform an exact search.

To use the quotation marks modifier, include " " around phrases.
  • "University of Calgary"
Result: items that contain the exact phrase "University of Calgary" are displayed
*  

The asterisk * is a wildcard that matches any number of characters.

To use the asterisks wildcard, insert * where you want the asterisk to take the place of one or more characters.
 
  • build*
Result: items that contain the term "build", "building", "buildings", etc. in searchable fields are displayed
?  

The question mark ? is a wildcard that acts as a single character.

To use the question mark wildcard, insert ? where you want the question mark to take the place of a single character.
 
  • p?ne
Result: Cortex displays assets that have “pine” or “pane” in searchable fields are displayed

 

* while the PDF viewer has a Find in Document function, this currently only supports single term or exact phrase searches

The Advanced Search form provides more options for targeting your search to specific fields like the Title or other properties. Some advanced search fields support search modifiers.