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Victoria University | Melbourne Australia

Advanced Searching - Proximity Operators
Linking Word With Adjacency

Proximity or adjacency operators can be used in conjunction with Boolean operators to focus your search.

Proximity operators allow you to indicate how closely two search terms are positioned to each other. Words that are close to each other are more likely to be relevant than words that are widely separated.

Using proximity operators will limit your search, resulting in a smaller search result.

A proximity operator has two components:

  • letters which indicate a specific search syntax
  • a number that indicates how close the words must be to each other

Example:
allergies w5 asthma (to find the words allergies and asthma within 5 words of each other)

Note: Proximity or adjacency operators vary between databases. Check the online Help to find which operators apply to the database you are using.

 

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