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Writing 101 (Wilson, Spring 2024): Searching: PsycINFO limiters

4) Fields

In PsycInfo the default is to look for your search terms Anywhere. If your results are not relevant OR you have too many results, you may wish to look for your most important terms in a specific field such as the Title field or the Abstract field.


Field Searching Narrows

  • "social anxiety" (Search ANYWHERE = 7013 results)
  • "social anxiety" (Search in Document TITLE field = 2650 results)

5) Methodology Limit

For this class, you will be primarily interested in empirical studies (original research).  Use the Methodology limiter in PsycInfo to narrow to these types of studies.


APA describes the methodology field values found in the PsycInfo and PsycArticles databases.

  • In addition to the Empirical Study limiter, there are also limiters for Clinical Case Study and Treatment Outcome/Clinical Trial.

A Methodology limiter (as the names suggests), limits or narrows the results.

  • "birth order" AND personality (without a methodology limiter = 1173 results)
  • "birth order" AND personality (with a methodology limiter of Empirical Study = 557 results)