Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Scientific Methods in Behavioral Science: Research Tips

PSY 270: Scientific Methods in Behavioral Science

Search Strategies

How Search Strategies Work 


Search Strategy

What it does



(Boolean Operator)

All terms must appear

Narrows your search

Fewer results

Use to include multiple unique concepts

“coffee AND Brazil” searches for all articles that include both terms, coffee and Brazil


(Boolean Operator)

Either term may appear

Broadens your search

More results

Use for related concepts

“coffee OR caffeine” searches for either term in the articles


(Boolean Operator)

Removes a term from your search

Narrows your search

Fewer results

Use for concepts you do not want to include

“South America NOT Brazil” searches for articles on South America and removes articles with the word Brazil in them


Search for exact phrases

Narrows your search

Fewer results

“ecological tourism” searches for that phrase in that particular order


Searches for all forms of a word

Broadens your search

More results

Use to search for the root word of a concept

Add an asterisk * to the root or stem of a word

A search for “tour*” will look for tour, tourism, tourist


Using Boolean Operators


How to Read & Use Scholarly Articles

Don't want to read that entire 15-50 page scholarly article?  Use the link below to learn how to navigate scholarly journal articles.

Quantitative vs. Qualitative Research

Need help figuring out if research is Qualitative or Quantitative?  Check out these great resources below.  They'll guide you through deciding!

Limit Your Results

Additional search limits are available when you limit your search to APA PsycINFO and APA PsycARTICLES.  Use the Choose Databases link at the top of the Psychology database to deselect all the databases except these two psychology databases.

Limit options available when only searching these two databases include:

 1.  Population

 2.  Age Groups

 3. Methodology

  • Clinical Case Study
  • Empirical Study
  • Field Study
  • Literature Review
  • Interview

 4.  Document Type