Liberation: Using the Web (Intermediate)

Phrase Searching

If a basic search using only one search term has returned too many documents, there are ways of narrowing or focusing your search.

The simplest way to narrow your search is to look for a phrase instead of an individual word. A phrase is useful for providing your search with a context.

For example, "working class" is more focused than class on its own.

Like many search engines, Bing expects you to indentify a phrase by enclosing it in quotation marks. Otherwise it will simply look for the individual words anywhere in a document.

For example, if you enter the search working class, the search engine may find the sentence "The class carried on working even though the bell for playtime had rung." and retrieve it as a hit. Searching for "working class" with speech marks will only find sources containing the words together and in order.

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