OFF-CAMPUS, you will need to Sign-In to use this database tutorial: 



Upon completion of this tutorial, you will know how to do the following things in the Advanced Technologies & Aerospace Database, also called the Aerospace Database. 

  • Use Keywords
  • Broaden & Narrow using "synonyms" & Boolean Logic
  • Narrow using field limits
  • Find subject field terms/Thesaurus
  • Sort by relevance or recent publications
  • Find an article
  • Request an item via Interlibrary Loan
  • Get help

Use the arrows below to navigate through this tutorial. 

At the end of the tutorial, print out or save your certificate of completion to submit to your instructor.


Think of Keywords for Topic-- UAV use with climate change policy

Enter all words -- UAV use with climate change policy -- in the database.  Click Search.  All of these words must be present in each of the results.  Notice the number of resulting citations.  

Let's expand the search using keyword "synonyms."

What are some keywords you might use for UAV?

What are some keywords for the concepts of:

  • climate change
  • policy

Let's begin some search comparisons....

Search with Synonyms & Boolean Logic

Search with "Synonyms" & Boolean Logic   

Click on the Advanced Search screen to enter a search across 3 search boxes (Click +Add a row.  You can copy & paste each row): 

drone* OR UAV OR UAS OR unmanned

AND "climate change*" OR "global warming"

AND polic* OR regulation*

Click Search


Explanation of Boolean Logic:

 "OR" expands a concept with "synonyms" to get more results

"AND" will narrow the search & get fewer results

"NOT" excludes

In some databases, "OR" "AND" & "NOT" must be capitalized for Boolean searching.


Explanation of Punctuation:

* asterisk

" " quotation marks

In the Advanced Search, click on Search tips for more.

Using Boolean Logic to Broaden Your Search

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Using Boolean Logic to Broaden your search:

Broaden your search by using which Boolean Logic word?

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Field Limits

Field limits allow you to narrow to things such as Source type, Document type, Language, Date, & Peer Reviewed. Click the Advanced Search screen. 

Click on Peer reviewed (under Limit to).  Scroll down & 

Click on Scholarly Journals (under Source type)

Click Search.  How do these change the results?

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End-of-Search-Box Field Limits

To get back to the Advanced Search screen, click Advanced Search or Modify Search

After the terms: (drone* OR UAV OR UAS OR unmanned) change "Anywhere" to "Document title - TI"  

Click Search

By narrowing to the "Title" field, from the "Anywhere" field, you are requiring greater relevance. 

You could have selected many other field limits. Click to see some other options.

Click "Modify Search" & experiment by selecting other fields of the record to narrow to different results.

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Narrow to Relevant Materials

Narrow to fewer, more relevant, materials by:

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Use the Thesaurus & Abstract/Details for field limit suggestions


Under the Advanced Search, click on the Thesaurus.

Search for words to find other SU/Subject suggestions.  You can click on terms to "Add to the Search" if you wish.

Abstract Details:

Under each citation, click on Abstract/Details to find the SU/Subject & Identifier/Keywords for each citation.  These are great for providing other suggestions.

Explore with different subject "synonyms" and limits!

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Subject Field Searches

The BEST WAY to find subject field words for this database are:

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Relevance vs Most Recent First

Narrowing by Subject or using other limits can help to find more relevant materials.  Results are automatically sorted to Relevance.

Change Relevance to "Most recent first" & click Sort.  Compare.

This is an important feature in the Aerospace Database that can sometimes be very helpful.

Use all of these various techniques to explore your topic and find the best results.

Using Boolean Logic to Broaden Your Search

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Select an article.  You can Save (to RefWorks or other places), Email, Print, or Cite.

Articles might be full text or available full text when you click on:

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Interlibrary Loan

If CFL does not have the materials you need, you might want to consider Interlibrary Loaning the item.  

Register & Request through Interlibrary loan.

To learn more about the ILL process click here.  You can register for ILL services now so you're ready to submit an ILL request when the need arises.

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Getting Help

How do you get help?

Ask your Subject Librarian.


Look for the Ask a Librarian! button in the bottom right hand corner of any Library webpage. Click the button and you'll have direct access to a CFL Reference Librarian who can assist you.




Stop by the Reference Desk on the 2nd floor of the CFL.

Or visit our Ask a Librarian webpage!

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How did we do?

Send us your feedback by taking this library survey!


Please enter your name and email address to retrieve a copy of your completed quiz.

You can enter multiple email addresses separated by commas. If you are doing this for a class, you may need to enter your instructor's email address also.