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SciFinder Database Guide: Search Tips

What SciFinder Search Algorithms Do For You

  • Automatically search both American and British spelling: sulfur and sulphur, synthesize and synthesise, etc.
  • Automatically search both single and plural forms of a word
  • Might add some related terms to your search (or might not!)

Weaknesses of SciFinder Search Algorithms

Problem Solution Example
Search algorithm problems & solutions
No automatic retrieval of grammatical variants Plan ahead & list additional search terms Search for freeze drying as well as freeze dried
No automatic retrieval of narrower subject terms Plan ahead & list additional search terms Search for argon, radon, etc. as well as noble gas
AND operators don't work
  1. Use a preposition like of or with instead
  2. Enter 1 search term, click Refine, then click Research Topic, enter next search term
  3. Enter 1 search & get references, click Save, enter next search & get references, click Tools, click Combine Answer Sets, select saved set, click Intersect
  1. green bleaching of paper
  2. green bleaching [Refine by Research Topic] paper
Lacks special search features of PubMed and MEDLINE Search those databases directly from the library databases list  

CASSI (CAS Source Index)

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