Q. What is a wild card and how do I use it?


Wildcards are symbols that you add to a search term to maximize your search results in library databases.  A wildcard is usually a character that may be used in a search term to represent one or more other characters.

The two most commonly used wildcards are:

  • An asterisk (*) may be used to specify the end of a root word, when it is referred to as "truncation."  For example:  typing educat* would tell the database to look for all possible endings = educateeducatededucation, and educational.
  • question mark (?) may be used when there are variable spellings for a word, and you want to search for all variants at once.   For example, searching for colo?r would return both color and colour.
  • Last Updated Nov 14, 2016
  • Views 3
  • Answered By Eleanor Goldberg

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