Skip to Main Content

NURS111 Fall 2020

Boolean Operators

Search Strategies

  • Develop Keywords

  • Before you search, consider terminology related to your topic. You utilize terms from your background research to help you develop a good list. Try to think through all the facets of your topic, and be sure to add synonyms and related terms. If you're not getting the best results when you search with one term, just switch it out for another and keep exploring. 

  • Use Search Connectors (Boolean Operators)
    When you construct a search in a database, you'll usually see search connectors such as "AND" and "OR." Use AND to connect two or more keywords and get results that address all of the terms. Use OR if you want to include a variety of synonyms. 

Evidence Based Nursing

Using these steps makes it easier to apply current quality evidence from research in clinical and healthcare decisions.

  • Formulate answerable clinical questions   
  • Search for the best evidence
  • Critically appraise the evidence
  • Integrate evidence into practice
  • Evaluate the results
  • Disseminate the evidence

A commonly used format for creating a clinical question is known as PICO(T) which refers to:

=Patient population of interest

=Intervention/issue of interest

C =Comparison of interest

=Outcome of interest


Example: Among the elderly, can yoga help reduce accidental falls? 

P = Elderly

I = Yoga

C = Patients not doing yoga

O = Reducing accidental falls

You can utilize your PICO(T) question to help shape your search strategy.

Term 1 OR Concept 1 OR Synonym 1 Term 2 OR Concept 2 OR Synonym 2 Term 3 OR Concept 3 OR Synonym 3
Elderly OR Older Adults OR Aged Yoga OR balance exercises  Accidental falls OR fall reduction OR fall prevention