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Home > Help > Help using our catalogue > Using advanced search

Using advanced search

The advanced search function gives you more options to refine your search and combine different search criteria. For example, you could limit your search to newspapers published in Melbourne in the Greek language.

Understanding the Advanced Search box

Advanced Search contains several different components that you can combine to build a custom search:

  • Search Scope: the broad area of SLV collection to search. Choose to limit your search scope to Manuscripts, Pictures, Maps, Articles, eBooks or items available on the shelf for immediate access.
  • Field selector: Search for your keyword in all fields, or in specific fields of the record.
  • Search type: Select from
  • Contains: will search all keywords anywhere in the chosen field
  • Is (exact): will search all keywords in the chosen field exactly as they appear, or
  • Starts With (titles only): title field starts with the keywords searched, exactly as they appear.
  • Search box: enter your search term(s) here
  • Operators: combine multiple search lines using Boolean operators OR, AND or NOT.
  • Resource type: further refine your resource type. Choose from Books, Journals, Newspapers, Pictures, Maps, Manuscripts, Sound Recordings, Videos, Realia, Music Scores and Websites.
  • Language: Refine results by language (if your language isn’t shown here, try searching the Language Note field instead)
  • Start and End Date: limit your search by creation date
  • Add a new line: include extra search string lines in your search query

Searching within specific fields

While Simple Search allows you to search in the Title, Author and Subject fields of our records, Advanced Search allows you to search specifically within these other useful fields:

  • user tags
  • the text of selected manuscripts descriptive lists
  • the place newspaper was published
  • the name of the publisher
  • the year an item was created or published
  • the accession number or image number, which are unique numbers assigned to manuscripts and pictures
  • the ISBN or ISSN
  • the notes, or general information about the item
  • the contents or summary notes, which tell you about the contents of an item
  • the series or collection title used mainly for books series, maps and collections of unpublished works such as photos
  • the language note, which includes both the language in which an item is written and the original language if it's a translation
  • copyright statement, including any access requirements or copyright status
  • the collection code; for example, B for books in the Redmond Barry Reading Room

Building a search

Select the Field that you want to search, decide on the Search Type that you wish to use (Contains, Exact or Starts With), and enter your search term(s) in the Search Box to form a search string.

You can combine multiple search strings using an Operator.

Further refine your search by changing the Search Scope, Resource Type, Language and/or Start or End Date.

Example searches

To find: Newspapers published in Bendigo

  • Search scope: Journal & newspaper titles
  • Field: Place newspaper published
  • Contains keyword: bendigo

To find: Portrait images that are out of copyright

  • Search scope: Pictures & photographs
  • Filter: Copyright statement Contains keyword “out of copyright”
  • Operator: AND
  • Filter: Subject
  • Contains keyword: portraits 

To find: Books about Chinese history in Chinese, published after 1990

  • Search scope: books
  • Filter: Subject
  • Contains keyword: China History
  • Language: Chinese
  • Start date: 1990

More search tips

For more search tips you can use in a simple or advanced search, see How to search.