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The Otago LibGuides are changing! The system will undergo a major update from 17 June to 15 July. You can learn more by taking a look at our LibGuides prototype here.

Searching Ovid: Basic Search

Your Search Results

  • For most searches in Basic Search, you will have a large number of results – in the thousands or tens-of-thousands.
    This is normal – don’t panic! The results are relevance-ranked, so you don’t need to go through all of the results, just the first few pages. See the section on using limits to reduce the numbers and increase the relevance.
    Ovid - Number of results returned
  • In the grey bar at the top of the list of results, there are a few different options for how much detail you see, and how many results are displayed per page:
    Ovid - Results per page
  • Your results will have exact matches to your search terms highlighted in yellow,
    and related terms highlighted in plum:
    Ovid - Highlighted search terms in results
  • Results are listed in order of relevance, and every result is given a star ranking based on its relevance:
    • 5–Star results should contain all of your search terms,
      Ovid - 5 star result
    • 4–Star results may be missing one of your search terms, and so on.
      Ovid - 4 star result
  • Because results are in relevance order, you may find some of the top results are quite old. You may also find that some of your results are not in English. See the section on using limits to remove any unwanted results.
    Ovid - Example of old result
    Ovid - Example of non-English result
  • You can apply limits to customise your search results. Popular Limits are available on the main search page, in the blue box just below the search bar. The most helpful limits here are English Language and Publication Year.
    Ovid - Limit results options
  • You can add a limit to a selected search line by ticking the limit, or selecting a date range, and then clicking Search (you do not need to type anything into the search box). The limit will be applied to the last line of your search by default. (You can apply a limit to an earlier search line by ticking the box next to it).
    Ovid - Limit results
    The limit will appear as a new search line in your Search History.
    Ovid - Limit search history
  • You can also limit by star ranking using the filters to the left of the results. Click on your preferred star-rating (e.g. 5 stars only) to apply the limit. This will take you back to the top of the page. Scroll back down and click Add to Search History:
    Ovid - Limit search to 5-star results
    Ovid - Limit search history