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Metis Resources: Complex searching/Boolean/the '5'

Looking for information about or by the Metis in Canada? This Guide offers suggestions for locating such materials.

Examples

Some databases support Boolean or complex searching. It is not necessary to do so, but if you want, here are some ways to construct these searches. Databases work in different ways - look for the HELP screen in any database for how to set up searches in the database you are using. Note that this is not the best way to set up a search on the BU Library Catalogue - see its HELP screen for details.

In the Indigenous Resources LibGuide, there is a detailed section called 'searching the 5.' This can be altered when searching Metis topics. Example:

    (indigenous OR native* OR aboriginal* OR "first nation*" OR indian* OR metis)

Examples:

    (indigenous OR native* OR aboriginal* OR "first nation*" OR indian* OR metis) AND justice
    (indigenous OR native* OR aboriginal* OR "first nation*" OR indian* OR metis) AND women
    (indigenous OR native* OR aboriginal* OR "first nation*" OR indian* OR metis) AND residential school*

  • Use OR to capture ANY of the words.
  • Use brackets around OR'd words.
  • Add additional words with an AND.
  • Add an asterisk * to capture a word that may have a different ending - such as an 's'-  "first nation" AND "first nations".
  • Quotation marks "" identify phrases, such as "first nation".

Examples:

    (metis OR indigenous) AND health
    (metis OR indigenous) AND poetry
    (metis OR indigenous) AND fiction

To search records where the word half-breed might exist, try:

    (metis OR halfbreed OR "half-breed")

Search examples:

    (metis OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND riel
    (metis OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND scrip
    (metis OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND fur trade     
    (metis OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND "fur trade"   
       

The asterisk could also be used with the term Metis. Examples:

    metis* literature
            search any word beginning with the letters m-e-t-i-s AND the word literature

    (metis* OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND literature
            Search any word that begins m-e-t-i-s OR any word that begins h-a-l-f-b-r-e-e-d OR any phrase that begins h-a-l-f b-r-e-e-d    AND THEN add the word literature. The results will include any record with any one of the first three terms (and their variations) AND the last term.

    (metis* OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND (litera* or poet*)  
            Search any word that begins m-e-t-i-s OR any word that begins h-a-l-f-b-r-e-e-d OR any phrase that begins h-a-l-f b-r-e-e-d AND THEN SEARCH FOR EITHER any word that begins l-i-t-e-r-a (this will include literature, literary, literatures, and so on) OR any term that begins with the letters p-o-e-t (poet, poets,poetry - but NOT poems). To include poems as an option, try

    (metis* OR halfbreed* OR "half-breed*") AND (litera* or poet* or poem*)  
            Searching p-o-e* is an option, but that three letter combination returns many terms not relevant.

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Heather Coulter
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