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Starting Your Research Series

Using filters

Databases also have filters you can use to narrow down the results you see. This is another way the database is organized to help you find the best results for your search. 

Filters can include:

  • Publication date
  • Whether the article is available in full-text (i.e., you can read it in full)
  • Source type
  • Publisher
  • Language
  • Subject
  • Whether a source is scholarly or popular

Sometimes you can find filters below the search box, and sometimes you will see them on the left-hand side of your results page. See both options below, or open Academic Search Complete (note: Academic Search Complete will open in a new window) to explore them yourself (note that you will need to use the VPN to open Academic Search Complete):

A Table Showing the Appearance of Filters in Two Locations in a Typical Database

Limiters on the left-hand side:   
| Limiters below your search:
A screenshot of the left-hand search menu showing filter or limiter options A screenshot of the advanced search filter options available on the search screen prior to generating results

Filters will reduce the number of results you see so they are more targeted toward what you need.


Click the Next button to learn more about how to get additional information.