Scholastic Help: Newspapers and Wires

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[edit] About the Newspapers and Wires Search Form

The Newspapers and Wires Search form is located in the News section of LexisNexis Scholastic. On this form, you can accomplish tasks like:

  • Search through content that comes specifically from Newspapers
  • Search through "Small Town" newspapers
  • Search through newswires
  • Search non-US newspapers
  • Find news articles by author, headline, or subject
  • Narrow results by date

[edit] Search For

This form has a quick search default. If you enter terms only in the first row and leave the date set to "All Available Dates" the search will work pretty much the way the "Search the News" option works on the Easy Search. If all you want to do is search for a few terms in a specific source, then the rest of this Help section does not apply to you.

If you use any of the other features, then the form switches to Boolean logic and you do need to read the rest of this Help section.

Boolean logic means you construct your search using individual terms joined by connectors such as "And" and "Or." If you are looking for stories about Hillary Clinton and simply search on "Hillary Clinton," LexisNexis will assume that you want to find documents in which those two words occur in that order and right next to each other. You will miss any document that refers to her as "Hillary Rodham Clinton." To find such documents you can enter the terms on separate lines and pick the "AND" or "within 5 words of" option from the drop down box for Connectors (see below). For more about connectors, see the article on Boolean Searching.

Note: Although quote marks are used in the examples, they are ignored in Boolean searches. If you want to search a phrase, simply enter it in a single text box and LexisNexis will assume you want the exact words in the exact order.

[edit] Connectors

The second and third input rows of in the Search For section start with a drop down box that lets you choose connectors when you have entered terms on more than one row. The connectors are:

  • And
  • Or
  • Not
  • Within 5 words of
  • In Same Sentence as
  • In Same Paragraph as

For an explanation of how these and the other available connectors work, and to learn about search techniques, see the article on Boolean Searching.

[edit] Search Terms

Sometimes called "keywords," the terms you enter in the text box will be matched against terms that occur in documents when your search is run. There are a few things you should know about entering terms on this form:

  • Implied adjacency -- if you enter two or more words in the same box (with no connector), LexisNexis will assume you want to find documents in which those words occur together and in order. Entering "hot dog" will only find documents that mention hot dogs. Entering "hot AND dog" will find any document that has both these words, for example a story about a dog on a hot day.
  • Automatic pluralization -- LexisNexis automatically searches plural forms of most nouns. You do not need to use wildcard characters to search for "dog" and "dogs," simply enter "dog" and LexisNexis will find both variations.

[edit] Restrictions

The default "Everywhere" option in the drop down boxes at right will run a full-text search for the term(s) you have entered. In some cases, you will get a much better result by restricting the search using one of the choices in the drop down box. For example, if you wanted to find Opinion pieces that Hillary Clinton has published in the New York Times, searching Everywhere will bring back thousands of false hits on stories that simply mention her. If you enter "Hillary" and pick "in Author" on the first row, and enter "Clinton" and pick "in Author" on the second row, the search will bring back only articles she wrote. (As described in the "Search Terms" section, you could also enter "Hillary AND Clinton" in a single text box, then pick "in Author.") The restriction choices are:

  • Everywhere -- as the name implies, this option searches the full text of all documents
  • Author -- searches only for words in the author or byline field
  • Headline & Lead -- great for finding stories that focus on your topic, it searches the headline and first paragraph
  • Subject Terms -- these are the key concepts contained in the article
  • At least 5 Occurrences -- great way to find stories that mention your terms a lot

These are only the most commonly used types of restrictions. For more ways to focus your search, see the article on Scholastic Document Sections

[edit] More Options

Use the "Edit in Power Search" link at the bottom of the form to copy your search into the Power Search form, where you will have more more flexibility and features, including the ability to add index terms, search in specific document sections, and use more complicated Boolean logic.

[edit] Specify Date

One of the most efficient ways to narrow your results set is by specifying the date. If you're researching a current event, try narrowing the date to the last 6 months. If you're researching a past event, use the "Is Between..." option to set the dates yourself. Choosing a time period to search through will change your results drastically. You will be much more likely to find relevant results.

[edit] Select Source

Selecting a specific source is another way to limit your results for a more precise set of search results. The All News search form provides two ways to search by source.

First, you can use the drop-down box to select a specific type of news publications. This is helpful if you would like to search through all of one particular type of publication, like newspapers. Your choices on the form are the following:

  • Newspapers
  • Newswires
  • US Newspapers and Wires
  • Non-US Newspapers and Wires
  • Major Newspapers
  • Small Town Papers (US)

If you want to search a specific source, use the "Find Sources" link to navigate to the Source Directory. From there, you can choose multiple specific sources to search within. For example, if you wanted to search "The New York Times" and "The Washington Post" at the same time, simply click the "Find Sources" link, select the sources, and go from there. For more instructions on the Source Directory, click here.

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