Browse indexes

The Browse indexes tab on the Quick and Expert search forms provide access to various indexes you can use in your searches. The indexes listed on this tab depend on the database(s) you have selected.

Note On rare occasions it is possible to see the Browse indexes tab grayed out depending upon the database(s) that you have selected for your search. In these cases, select a different database combination in order to see the Browse indexes feature.

Use a Browse index

  1. From the Quick or Expert search forms, select one or more databases from the Databases tab.
    NoteRefer to Content sources introduction for a brief description of all the databases.
  2. From the Browse indexes tab, select an index by clicking it. The selected index page opens.

    The name of the index displays at the top of the index page.

  3. Display search terms from the index in one of the following ways:
  4. Select the check box of the search term.
    NotesIn Quick search, when you select a term from the index, it is automatically pasted into the first available Search box, and the field name changes to the name of the corresponding index. Clearing the selection for the term from the index removes it from the Search box.

    In Expert search, when you select a term from the index, it is automatically pasted into the Search box with the WN (within) command and the field code. You can select as many terms as needed. For example, (({SMITH JOHN}) WN AU) OR (({SMITH JOHN A }) WN AU) OR (({SMITH JOHN D}) WN AU)

    If you have selected more than one database, the database name is indicated after the term in the Browse index.

  5. To have a second index term pasted from the index with either a Boolean AND or OR connecting it to the first term, click the AND or OR radio button in the top portion of the Browse index page and then select the term.  Repeat this for a third index term, if desired. For more information, refer to Boolean operators.

    You may also use the Next page and Previous page feature for navigating to additional index terms.

    NoteEach time you run a Quick or Expert search on at least 2 databases and use one or more Browse indexes, there is a risk of actually removing a database from the search. Therefore, be sure to note the databases listed after each term in each Browse index.
  6. To switch to another index, select it from the Selected index drop-down list at the top right side of the index box.
  7. Click the minimize button to return to the Quick or Expert search form.
  8. In Quick search, click Add search field to display additional fields for searching or enter additional search terms in Expert search if desired.
    NoteIn Quick search, after you have selected 12 terms in the index, a message displays stating that you have reached the maximum 12 search fields.
  9. Click the magnifying glass icon () to run your search.

Author Browse Index

Where available, the Author Browse Index is useful for searching on author names, especially for searching for authors with very common surnames. For example, searching on author Alan Smith, as Smith A retrieves records by other authors such as Smith Amy, Smith Andrea, and Smith Alex. Use the Author Browse index to check all known variations for the author's name.

Note If you have selected more than one database, the field preference takes precedence over the database preference. For example, if you select Full text from the field preference, and Compendex from the Database preference, and there are no full-text records in Compendex, the system retrieves full-text records from Inspec, although Compendex was your preferred database.

Document type indexes

You may search multiple document types via this index by selecting all applicable check boxes.


If a document type has had an alternative name in the past (e.g. "book" has also been called "monograph review" (MR) and "book chapter" has also been called "monograph chapter" (MC) for some databases, the code for the alternative document type appears in italics in parentheses after the database name.

Patent indexes

When searching just the EP Patents or the US Patents databases, the following two indexes are available:

When searching just the EnCompassPAT database from Quick search, the above two indexes are available as well as the following two indexes:

When searching just the EnCompassPAT database from Expert search, the above four indexes are available as well as the following index:

Note Expert search contains more indexes (e.g. Language) than Quick search due to some of these indexes being limiters on the Quick search form.


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