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Our Search Tips


Exact Phrase

Let's say you're searching on Google for content about online public relations strategy. Instead of just typing online public relations strategy, you can enclose the search within double quotes “”.

  • Example: “online public relations strategy"

Exclude Words

If you want to search for content on qualitative research methods, but you want to exclude any results that contain the term quantitative. Simply put the minus - sign in front of the word you want to exclude.

  • Example: “research methods” qualitative –quantitative

This OR That

By default, when you conduct a search, Google includes all the terms listed in the search. If you're looking for one or more terms to match, then you can use the OR operator. (Note: The OR has to be capitalized).

  • Example: early childhood care and education OR ecce

Word Definitions

If you need to quickly look up the definition of a word or phrase, simply use the define: command. You can also listen to the word's pronunciation by pressing on the megaphone icon.

  • Example: define:HRM

Missing Words

Ever forgotten a word or two from a poem, song lyric, quote, or something else? You can use an asterisk* as a wildcard, which can help you find the missing word in a phrase.

  • Example: I will arise * and go to Innisfree

(The first line of "The Lake Isle of Innisfree" poem by William Butler Yeats is: I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree).

Specific Document Types

If you’re looking to find results of a specific type, you can use the modifier filetype:. For example, you might want to find PowerPoint presentations on horticultural plants.

  • Example: “horticultural plants" filetype:ppt

Words in the Title

If you want to find a webpage with certain words contained in the title (not necessarily beside each other)? Type in allintitle: followed immediately by the words or phrases.

  • Example: allintitle:final cut pro

How to Search Within a Website

You can use this Google tip when you are fairly sure you can find information on a topic from a given website, but you are not exactly sure where. Simply use the

  • Example: site: "progression routes"

Search within a exact time period

Run your search, then click 'Tools' and the 'Any time' drop-down menu to limit the results to more recent hits. Or if you want to look for old news that has been replaced by more current stories, then you might want to specify a date range.

  • Choose Custom range, and specify a start and end date.

These are just some of the search tips available which are great for getting started, yes, there are more!

If you really want to get specific, you should take advantage of Google's more focused search options using the Advanced Search. The Advanced Search page lets you narrow down search results for complex searches. On any Google search results page, click ‘Settings’ from the toolbar at the top, and then choose ‘Advanced search’.

Reverse image search lets you search for similar images by simply uploading an image instead of a using keywords for a search.

Go to: Google Images and Click 'Search by image' - see Google Support for more information.