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Public Health - Undergraduate Program

Resources for students in the undergraduate public health program.

A Searchable Question

Begin with a well-focused research question.

What is the dietary intake of dairy products by adolescents in the U.S.?


What are the main terms in this question?

dairy products / dietary intake / adolescents / United States


Synonyms, words that mean the same thing or are closely related to your main search terms, can help expand your search appropriately.  

dairy products dietary intake adolescents United States
milk food intake    
cheese meals    
yogurt diet    

Boolean Operators

Boolean operators such as AND & OR are used to connect synonyms & concepts.

  • Use OR to connect synonyms to appropriately expand your search for a concept. Your search results will contain citations for each term.  Place parentheses around the search terms when you use OR so that the database searches them together. 
  • Use AND to connect concepts.  This will narrow your search results, giving you just the articles that include all terms, that is,  the intersection of the search terms you've used.  Remember:  Databases assume AND between terms, so you don't have to use it.
  • Always capitalize boolean operators; if you don't, they'll be ignored.

Venn diagrams And/Or