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BenSearch: Getting Started

There are three search interfaces available in BenSearch:

  • the keyword search
  • the simple search, and
  • the advanced search.

While each interface searches the same content, each interface provides a different level of detail for your search. See the boxes below for more information on each of these interfaces.

To access all interfaces, select the BenSearch tab on the library home page.

Keyword Search

Benedictine Library web page - books & articles tab

To access the keyword interface, select the BenSearch tab on the library homepage.

Type one or more keywords and then click the Search button. The system will automatically look for all terms entered.

Note: Searches from this box are only keyword searches (no distinction between author, title, etc.)


  • Enter a word or a short phrase.  You will be able to add additional terms later.
    • When searching for long, complex titles, try entering only the first five or six words.
  • Do not type complete sentences or questions. Instead, type keywords or phrases, e.g., facemasks.
  • To search for a specific phrase, type quotation marks around the phrase. (example: "global warming")
  • Be flexible - if you don't like your results, retry your search with different words.
  • If you like to use the Boolean operators OR or NOT, you must enter them in uppercase letters for them to work as operators.

  • Wildcards can be used to replace a character or find multiple variations of a specified root word:

    • Use ? for a single character -  for example:. wom?n to search for strings woman or women.

    • Use * for multiple characters - for example: type cultur* to search for records that contain strings, such as culture, cultural, and culturally..

  • Once you have your initial search results, you can fine-tune them in the Simple or Advanced Search options.

  • After you perform a search, see other options listed in the Subjects category. Look carefully through the list of topics and include all that are of interest to you.

Simple Search

Simple Search


  • This interface appears when you start typing in the search box.
  • A drop-down menu below the search box provides you with control over your search. 
  • Now you can limit your search to:
    • Books and e-books in the Benedictine Library (Library Catalog)
    • Articles from some, but not all, library databases (Articles & EBSCO Search)
    • Materials available on Interlibrary Loan (I-Share)
    • Materials reserved for specific clasees (Course Reserves)


Advanced Search

Use  the Advanced Search option for more precise searching.

After doing a basic search, notice that there is an option to switch over to advanced search. Click on the Advanced Search link to access  the advanced search options.

Link to Advanced Search

There are many options to explore in the drop-down menus of Advanced Search. 

Advanced Search


  • Use the Advanced Search, to limit your search to specific fields, material types, and publication dates.
  • Use the Filters to refine your results and limit to items only available online or physically at the library. You can also include or exclude dates, formats, authors, etc.
  • A Boolean search allows you to combine keywords with AND, OR, NOT.


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