Search (General) addremove
To search Science.gov, locate the search box that appears near the top of each page throughout the site. Enter your query and click the icon. Your query will be sent to every individual database or source connected to Science.gov and a returned list of results will display. The results are ranked by relevance, indicated by the number of stars beneath the document title. More stars indicate greater relevance.
In the results list, you may click directly to a particular result for more detailed information such as the bibliographic citation, abstract, and in many cases, the full text of the document. Host sites are also linked from each result.
Advanced Search addremove
Precise search results can be obtained by utilizing Science.gov's Advanced Search. Click the Advanced Search link that appears in the General Search box.
Enter search terms below then click Search.
The image above shows the Advanced Search form. Inside the blue box you can enter search terms in the "Full Record" and "Title" fields.
- The Full Record field searches the bibliographic record and full text of the document (if available) for a specified search term.
- The Title field searches for document titles with the specified search term.
Below the blue box, you can choose which sources to query by checking the category checkboxes. Science.gov searches all available sources by default. To limit results to a single or multiple sources, remove the check from the All Categories option and place a check next to the desired source(s).
Format Tabs addremove
At the top of search results pages, you can select a tab to refine search results by format/type.
Selecting, Downloading Citations, Printing & Emailing Results addremove
After a search query has been submitted, a list of results is returned. Desired results can be selected and saved for later use, emailed, and printed.
- Click on the empty box next to a desired result to add it to My Library (see the Folder icon found just above the search results).
Note: The number next to the My Library (Folder) icon will increase as more articles are added.
- Click on the My Library (Folder) icon to view the list of selected articles. Articles can be removed from this list by checking them and clicking the Delete (Trashcan) icon.
- Click the Back to Result List button to return to the search results.
- Click on the My Library (Folder) icon to view the citations and choose the download format.
- Enter an email address, name, and optional message in the spaces provided.
- Click the Send results button at the bottom of the window to email results.
- An email from results@Science.gov will be delivered to the specified email address.
Search Results Sorting, Limiting, and Search Summary addremove
Search results can be sorted by rank, date, title or author. Results can also be limited to a desired source in the All Collections drop-down list.
- Click on the arrow next to the Sort by option to display a drop-down menu.
- Select the desired sorting option: Rank (default), Date, Title, or Author.
To limit results to a particular Collection:
- In the Limit to box, click on the arrow next to All Collections to display a drop-down list of collections.
- Scroll through the list of sources and select the desired option.
- Results from only the specified source will be displayed.
Science.gov provides a summary of the number of results from of each separate source. The "sources complete" information appears at the top right of the results page.
Click on the link under the green bar (see image, above) to view the Search Status that shows the number of Total Results Found and the Total Results at Source from each source (see image, below).
- The green check indicates the search for that source completed successfully.
- A red X indicates the source was unresponsive.
- A clock with a red X indicates the source timed out before documents were received.
- A yellow check indicates some documents were received before the source timed out.
- Due to the number of sources that Science.gov searches, a maximum of 100 results per source is returned. Additional results from a particular source can be obtained by searching the source directly.
User Preferences addremove
Science.gov allows for user-control over certain search options.
- Click User Preferences (the wrench icon) from the list of links located above the search results.
- The Session Preferences window appears.
- The Results per page option allows you to decide how many results appear on each page, from 10 to 100. Click the arrow to display a drop-down menu and select the desired number of results to display. (Note: The default number shown is 20.)
- You can also choose:
- how to sort results, by rank or date
- to open the linked page in a new or the same browser tab
- whether or not to display duplicate and/or unranked results
- Click Save to apply new settings and return to the search results.
Side Bars addremove
Science.gov provides informative side bar options (on the left side of the results page) that include Topics and a Visual overview of search results.
- Date Range Picker where you can slide the buttons from the beginning or end of the time range to display results within the newly selected time range.
- Clusters of Topics and Authors where you can select the desired term to narrow the search results, or click on "More" to see additional options in that category. Note: The examples below illustrate the removal of an author you have selected from Clusters. For example, to remove the author (shown in the first image), click on the term above it (Populations). The second image shows the author has been removed.
Alerts make recurring searches easier by automating the search and sending you the results on a regular basis. To receive alerts on topic(s) of interest, create a free Alerts account, specify your alert parameters, and check your email.
Creating an Alerts account
- After a list of results is returned, click Alerts (see the exclamation "!" mark icon) or Sign In at the top right of the page.
- Click Register on the Alerts login page:
- Supply your user name, email address, email preference and format, and supply and confirm your password:
- Click the Create Account button.
- You will receive an email from results@Science.gov requesting account confirmation. Click on the link provided to activate your account. Note: You cannot begin using Alerts until your account has been activated.
Creating an Alert
- Click the Create button on the top left panel of the Alert home page.
- Alert Name: Enter a memorable name for your alert.
- Description: Clarify your alert for your future reference.
- Alert Email Format: You can choose either HTML or TEXT email format.
- Alert Frequency: Choose how often to receive your Alert results.
- Enter your search terms into any or all of the available fields.
- Select All Sources or the individual sources you want to search.
- Save Alert.
Creating Alerts from Search Results
- Click the Create new alert from this search link near the top left of the search results page.
- The information entered into the search will automatically populate the fields on the alert creation page.
- Alert parameters can be edited.
- If you have not created an Alerts account, Science.gov will remember your search information while you create and verify your new account.
Query Expressions addremove
In addition to simple search terms, Science.gov can conduct searches using multiple search terms, Boolean operators, exact phrases, parentheses, and wildcards.
Note: Searches are not case-sensitive. A search for SCIENCE, Science, or science will return the same results.
Multiple Search Terms
- Example: science technology
- Example: A search for science AND technology will return results on both science and technology.
- Example: A search for science OR technology will return results on either science or technology.
- Example: A search for science NOT technology will return results on science but not technology.
- Example: A search for "nuclear energy" will return only those results where energy immediately follows the term nuclear.
- Example: A search for nuclear ((energy consumption) OR waste) will return results for either nuclear energy consumption or nuclear waste.
- Example: A search for ((black holes) or (dark matter)) AND gravitation will search for either black and holes and gravitation or dark and matter and gravitation.
- Example: A search for part* will return results that include the terms part, particle, participate, etc.
- Example: A search for part? will return results with only one additional character: parts, party, etc.
Obtaining Full Text Documents in Science.gov addremove
Many of the sources searchable through Science.gov offer access to the full text documents referenced in their bibliographic records. Detailed information regarding full text access is available from the source websites. These sources are listed on the Advanced Search page. Links to these sources can also be found in the search results. Additional information regarding full text access is provided below.
Full Text Availability
Additionally, the results from some sources provide icons for linking to the full text. To view an electronic full text document, click on the full text icon (example, PDF icon). If there is no full text icon, go to the bibliographic record by clicking on the title for further information.