QUAKELINE® Database Help & Search Tips

Basic Search Technique

    The Basic Search is designed to search these fields in each record:
  • Accession number
  • Author (personal or corporate)
  • Title
  • Number
  • Year
  • Subject
  • Abstract
    When searching:
  • Enter a maximum of six search terms in the search box.
  • Use either upper or lower case; terms are not case-sensitive.
  • Avoid using Boolean operators, stop words, or punctuation.
  • All multiple search terms are treated as AND combinations.
  • Use quotes (" ") to search for a phrase.
If you enter,
steel concrete
sand liquefaction waves
"New York City"
"soil structure interaction"
"fiber reinforced polymer"
you will retrieve records containing:
tsunami or tsunamis or tsunamigenic, etc.
steel and concrete
sand and liquefaction and waves
New York City, but not New York or NYC
the phrase "soil structure interaction"
the phrase "fiber reinforced polymer"

Note the difference below in a basic search with words combined using the default AND, and searching that same combination of words within quotation marks.

If you enter,
reinforced concrete
"reinforced concrete"
finite element method
"finite element method"
number of records retrieved
    Final notes to consider:
  • Because we are located in the United States, we opt for the Americanized spelling of terms found in international journals. For example, you will find behavior (for behaviour), fiber (for fibre), and modeling (for modelling). You will find materials in numerous languages in this database.
  • Hyphenation may or may not appear as expected in your database search. Please consider searching hyphenated phrases both with and without the punctuation. For example: "soil-structure-interaction" (20 records) vs. "soil-structure interaction" (750 records) vs. "soil structure interaction" (1040 records).

Advanced Search Techniques

    The Advanced Search allows the user to be more precise and develop a more sophisticated search strategy. When searching:
  • Up to four terms or phrases can be combined.
  • Use Boolean operators (e.g. OR to combine; NOT to eliminate)
  • Combine two or more terms and search them as a single phrase, enclose them with quotation marks (e.g. "soil structure interaction")
  • Limit the records returned by publication date, either one year (e.g. 1987) or a year range (e.g. 2000-2003) can be submitted; use the four-digit format.

Search Operators

    Drop-down menus in front of the search query boxes permit the user to use the Boolean operators AND, OR, NOT, and ADJ to further qualify a search. These operators can be used to refine the search strategy and reduce or expand the number of records retrieved.
  • Use AND between terms to retrieve only records that contain both terms.
  • Use OR between terms to retrieve records that contain either one or both of the terms.
  • Use NOT between terms to retrieve records that contain the first term only.
  • Use ADJ to retrieve only records with the terms side-by-side in any order.
If you enter,
brick or block
sand and liquefaction
waves not ocean
tall adj buildings
you will retrieve records containing:
either brick or block, or both terms
both sand and liquefaction
the term waves, but not the term ocean
the phrase "tall buildings"

By using the word's stem only, the search results will include records that have singulars, plurals, and derivations of those first letters.

If you enter,
you will retrieve records containing:
structure, structures, structural
builds, building, or buildings
zone, zones, zoning, and zonation
intensity and intensities
seismic, seismicity, seismically, seismology,
seismological, seismometer

Field Searching
Dropdown menus after each search box allow the user to specify which field should be searched for a specific term.

Searches all searchable fields
Searches only the author field
Searches only the title field
Searches only the source field
Searches only the identifier field
Searches only the abstract field

An Explanation of QUAKELINE® Fields
Not every record will contain all the fields listed below.

QUAKELINE® Fields Defined
Field Label Field Name Contents
AU Author (Personal) All personal authors, also editors and compilers
CA Author (Corporate) Corporate entities responsible for item
IN Institution Institution of the first-listed personal author
TI Title Title of the item cited
SO Source Journal/Conference title, volume, number, etc.
PB Publisher Publisher, location, date of publication
AV Availability Access/Purchasing information
LO Location University at Buffalo Libraries Call Number
NU Number ISSN, ISBN, report number, grant number, etc.
NT Notes Item miscellanea: size, number of references, etc.
LG Language Language
PT Publication Type Book, technical report, journal, proceeding
YR Year Year of publication
DC Desc. Categories Broad subject category codes
ID Identifiers Subject terms
AB Abstract Brief content summary

If you still have questions, please watch the QUAKELINE® instructional video that covers both the basic and advanced search options in addition to covering various search techniques and tools (22mb).