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Lund University

LUBsearch & Electronic Resources: Searching

Searching EDS

The short videos below show useful functions in EBSCO Discovery Service, along with instructions on how to use limiters. Please note that the interface and some functions differ from the version we use at Lund University (LUBsearch). Detailed information regarding searching in LUBsearch can be found further down on this page.

Searching LUBsearch

Below, find out more about:


Basic search

In basic search you search among the following: 

  • Authors
  • Subjects
  • Keywords
  • Title information including source title
  • Abstracts (if there is no abstract, the first 1500 characters in HTML full text are searched)



Advanced search 

In advanced search, you can combine several different subsearches in different fields to create a more complex search. Please note that you need to choose either AND or OR between all the fields defining your search. You can also combine several terms with OR within a field and then combine that field with another one using AND. 

In the advanced search option, you can specify which field you are searching for. 


Be aware of the logical order in which words are connected when using Advanced search:

  • Databases usually recognize AND as the primary operator.
  • If you use a combination of AND and OR operators in a search, enclose the words to be connected by OR in parentheses.

(mouse OR rat) AND trap will return articles about mouse traps and rat traps but the search for mouse OR rat AND trap will return articles about mice together with articles about rat traps.


Search options

In the simple as well as the advanced search, a number of selections can be made:



A. Through the various search settings, the search words are processed in various ways. The default setting is Find all my search terms (AND) which means that all the search terms must be present in the searched fields for the entry to appear in the results list.

If your search terms are very specific, you can use Find any of my search terms (OR) to get results on one of the terms.

Proximity search means that the search terms must appear within five words of one another (NEAR 5).

SmartText Searching is used when you don’t get any results or if you want to search using a larger amount of text. You can copy and paste up to 5000 characters and search for the entire text. An algorithm analyses the text and extracts central terms which it uses as search words. Only EBSCO databases are covered in the search (e.g. MEDLINE and CINAHL).

BApply related words means that the system maps the search terms with related terms and searches for these as well.

C. Also search within the full text of the articles is not the default setting in LUBsearch. With this option you search the full text of articles for which EBSCO has an agreement with the publisher, even in cases when LU does not have access to the full text. This provides more results as the search terms are not necessarily included in the brief bibliographic entries or in the publisher’s information, but may appear exclusively in the article itself (it is then ranked as less relevant than in cases where the word appears in the title or as a subject word, however – see the section on relevance calculation below).

D. Accessible at Lund University (full text + LUBcat) means that you search only among material which is accessible in the libraries’ collections, i.e. e-resources which LU pays for, material in the LUBcat library catalogue or resources available through Open Access. Unselect this option if you want to make more exhaustive searches in the index, i.e. search in the whole of Scopus, MEDLINE, Web of Science, etc.

E. Author limits the search to the given author.

F. Journal name limits the search to to the specific journal. Note that this does not work for abbreviations.

G. Peer Reviewed limits the search to articles which are classified as peer-reviewed. This option eliminates book reviews, letters to the editor, etc.

H. Date Published limits the search to material from the period entered.

IReviewed Book Title limits the search to articles which contain the search term or terms in the title. Please note that this function does not work in the way its name indicates!

JCatalogue Only and Location limit the search to the library catalogue LUBcat. Use this if you want only the content of the library catalogue. With Location you can limit your search to a specific library within Lund University.


Search tips

Phrases are preferably searched for by placing the search terms in quotation marks, e.g. “heart failure”. This works with Find all my search terms and Find any of my search terms (see above). Please note that so called "stop words" ("in", "of", "the" etc.) are not included in phrases. Read more in the LUBsearch help texts.

Truncation (e. g. heart* to search for the word stem) and wildcards (e.g. S?rensen for Sörensen or Sørensen, or colo#r for color or colour) can be used – see the LUBsearch help texts for more information.

It is also possible to use complex search strings with quotation marks together with various operators.


Search history

The Search History allows you to return to previous searches to review them. You can also combine several searches into complex searches. The image below is search 3 (S3) a combination of S1 (findability OR retrievability) and S2 (web OR internet), i.e. a search with two blocks: (findability OR retrievability) AND (web OR internet).



The results list and the detailed record

The results list ranks the results according to a calculation of their relevance, but the list can also be sorted by publication date (newest or oldest first).


Result presentation


Relevance is calculated with reference to where and how often the search terms appear (see You can also choose to sort the results by publishing date.

In order of importance:

  1. In the field for the subject word from controlled thesauruses
  2. In the title
  3. Among the article author’s subject words
  4. In the abstract
  5. In the full text (if it is indexed by EBSCO)

Exact matches are ranked highest, but the location of the search terms is also taken into account. How often the search terms are present in relation to the length of the text (density) also counts, in particular if they are present in the title, subject word field or abstract. Other factors which affect the ranking:

– Document type: some types can be assigned a lower value

– Publication date: in case of equivalent relevance, the most recently published document is ranked higher

– Length: in case of equivalent relevance, longer articles are ranked higher than shorter ones

Once the relevance has been calculated in the various data sources, all matching results are displayed in a results list. This eliminates the results which appear in more than one data source so that only one article entry appears in the results list, i.e. if the matching works, the entries for a certain article from MEDLINE and CINAHL will not both be shown in the results list, but only one will appear (multiple results are removed). This means that a result from CINAHL in the top of the results list often also represents a result in MEDLINE.

The results list shows a summary of the record:



It is worth noting that the database from which the result and the information originate is shown at the end of the bibliographic information. In the example above, the source is CINAHL Complete

If you click on a title, you get to the detailed record (which can vary in length):



To the left of the detailed record are links to the full text, PDF Full Text or FulltextFinder (formerly LU Linker).


These are the same as the links in the results list.

To the right of the detailed entry are other functions/tools:


Some of these functions require you to be logged in to LUBsearch (with an EBSCO host account).

E-books and "terms of use"

Some e-books have a limited amount of simultaneous users. Those e-books have a link with the green text "Terms of use". If you click on the link you will get a short information on what is valid for that book.


Limiters and facets

In LUBsearch, limiters and facets work in different ways. Limiters can be placed before the search (under Search Options) and they remain in place until you remove them (or select New Search). Facets are a way of delimiting the results in the results list. Different types of limiters and facets appear to the left of the results list:



A.  Under Current Search you can choose to unselect limiters by unticking the box.

BLimit To is a mini-version of the search options applied to your results (see above). If you select Show More the entire window with all available options will appear.

C. Material Types lists the number of results of each type. This can be limited to one or several types.

DSubject is an automatic clustering of the results into partial subjects. The usability varies depending on the composition of the results list.

EPublication is the number of results per journal.

FPublisher is the publishing house which published the articles/books shown in the results list.

GLanguage shows the number of results in each language.

HLocation lists the libraries at Lund University where printed material in the result list is located. 

I. Collection shows results from each sub-collection.

J. Source Databases shows the number of results in each data source (activated sub-databases in addition to the search engine’s basic index).