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Using Search History on EBSCO Interfaces

All searches performed on the Advanced Search during your session are available from the Search History/Alerts Screen. You can combine recent searches and retrieve previous searches saved in your personal folder (My EBSCOhost). If enabled by your library administrator, search history may also be available from Basic Search.

Using Search History

To use your search history:

  1. Run a search on an EBSCO interface, and view your search results.

    Search History screen

  2. Click the Search History link. The Search History/Alerts window is displayed above the Result List. To close Search History, click the Search History link again.

  3. Select from the following search history features:

    • Add lines of search statement history to your current search – Select the lines of your search statement by marking the check boxes to the left of the search statements and then click either Search with AND or Search with OR. The lines of search history will be added to the Find field with the appropriate Boolean operator. Click Search to display a new Result List.

      Note: If your institution's administrator has set EBSCOhost to clear the Find field after performing a search, the lines of search history will not appear in the Find field but the result list will reflect the new search.

    • Copy your search into an RSS reader – Click the RSS alert icon to display the Syndication Feed URL, and then copy it into your newsreader.

    • View Results for a line of your search history – Click a linked View Results (xx). The Result List is displayed.

    • View Details – Click a View Details link to view the Interface, Search Screen, and Database for that line of your search history.

    • Edit Search – Click an Edit Search link. The Edit Search window is displayed. You can modify your search terms in the Find field and make any desired changes to limiters/expanders. Click Save. An updated Result List is displayed.

  4. You can delete specific searches from your history by placing a check in the box next to the desired searches and clicking the Delete Searches button.

    • The search history available to you includes only the searches from the current session. Unless you create a saved search, when your session ends, search history is cleared.

    • If you change databases, your search history is saved (the query only, not the result counts).

    • If the limiters, expanders, and search fields (author, title, subject) that you applied in the original databases are not available when you change databases or search screens, your searches may be affected.

      If search history is opened in a new database, Rerun appears in the Actions column in place of View Results. This indicates that the counts are not known because the search has not been run on your current database. When you view the results (by clicking on the Rerun link), a new search is launched and its results counts are added to the search history.

    • You can refresh your search results from within the Search History/Alerts window by placing a check in the box next to the search(es) you would like to refresh and clicking the Refresh Search Results button.

Editing a Search
  1. Click the Edit link for the search you would like to edit

    editing a search

  2. On the Edit Search screen, edit your search terms, search mode, expanders and/or limiters and click Save.

    edit search options

  3. A new result list is displayed.

    Any changes you made to your search are reflected in the Search History/Alerts window.

    updated result list

Combining Searches Using Boolean Operators

You can also combine previously run searches using parentheses and Boolean operators in the search box. This makes it possible to construct a new search using the Search IDs of previously run searches while including or eliminating terms using AND, OR, and NOT.

Search History

Using the Search History above as examples:

  • Maybe you would like a set of results that includes both 'climate change' and 'global warming' but also want results that contain both 'green energy' and 'alternative energy'. You can create a search in the search box with Boolean operators and your previously run searches using '(S1 AND S2) OR (S3 AND S4)'.

  • You can use the 'NOT' Boolean operator to exclude articles you do not want in your results. For example, if you would like articles that deal with 'climate change' and 'global warming' but you do not want articles that deal with 'green energy' and you do not want articles that deal with 'alternative energy', you would construct that search as '(S1 AND S2) NOT (S3 OR S4)'.

  • Maybe you would like a set of results that mention both 'climate change' and 'global warming' but don't want them to mention both 'green energy' and 'alternative energy'. However, results that deal with either 'green energy' OR 'alternative energy' are OK. In that case, you would construct your search as '(S1 AND S2) NOT (S3 AND S4)'