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- Records in library databases are comprised of fields containing specific pieces of bibliographic information. Common fields include: authors, source, publication type, language, subject headings, abstract, entry date (publication date), doi.
- There are many additional fields that can be searched in most databases
Example of a CINAHL record with common fields highlighted
SEARCHING USING FIELDS
- Limiting your search to specific fields in a database can yield more precise results:
- Search in the Author field to find articles by William Osler, if you just do a keyword search on William Osler you will find article about and by him
- Searching for terms and phrases in the subject heading field (must be the precise term/phrase - see subject headings for more information on this) will yield articles more directly related to your topic
- Searching for terms and phrases in the article title field may also yield articles more directly related to your topic
- Look for the Advanced Search page to search specific fields in a database
- Below are examples of Field searching in PubMed (Advanced Search option). CINAHL (Advanced Search option), and SCOPUS (default search page)