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Search Strings

What is a Search String?

A search string is a line of plain-text comprised of types, values, and operators that are easily combined to form a search query. For example, ((smart::cat)&&(smart::dog)) would search for items in your collection that contain both cats and dogs. Alexandria uses predefined syntax to interpret such strings, allowing you to compose your own search strings capable of performing complex queries against your database. These can be used directly in the search interface or as the basis for explore buttons, slideshow, links and more.

Search strings must be enclosed within double-parentheses ((queryType::searchValue)). Alexandria will locate the first and last parentheses and evaluate everything between from left-to-right. If there are “nested” parentheses, they will be evaluated first. Use parentheses within the string to differentiate multiple expressions, like this:((queryType::searchValue) && (queryType::searchValue))

Query Types & Values

Query Type

Search Value

Example

Usage Notes

accession

Accession Date

(DateTime)

(accession::201611170000)

(accession::201611170000--201612170000)

(accession::#201611150000)

Searches by Accession Date in YYYYMMDDHHMM.
Use “::#” as the separator to make this a begins with search.

author

Author Names

(Text)

((author::rowling))

((author::#rowling) && (author::#j k))

Searches fields:

Personal Name—100a, 100q, 700a, 700q.

Corporate Names—110a, 710a.

Meeting name—111a, 711a.

Use “::#” as the separator to make this an exact phrase search.

awards

Awards Notes

(Text)

((awards::ala) && (awards::notable) && (awards::books))

((awards::#caldecott) && (awards::#honor) && (awards::#book))

Searches field 586a.

Use “::#” as the separator to make this a near term search.

bibliographic

Bibliographic Term

(Text)

((bibliographic::whitestone) && (bibliographic::publishers))

Searches field 653a.

Use “::#” as the separator to make this a near term search.

curriculum

Curriculum Term

(Text)

((curriculum::geography) && (curriculum::212))

Searches field 658a.

Use“::#”as the separator to make this a near term search.

electronic

Title Policy

(Numeric Value, 0 or 1)

((electronic::1))

Setting ((electronic::1)) searches for items with an electronic resource policy only.

genre

Genre Term

(Text)

((genre::science) && (genre::fiction))

((genre::war) && (genre::stories))

((genre::dystopians))

Searches field 655a.

Ignores the “#” (if used) in the separator.

hidetitle

Title Attribute

(Numeric Value, 0 or 1)

((hidetitle::1))

Setting ((hidetitle::1)) overrides the "Hide Title" settings and causes all titles to be displayed.

interest

Interest Term

(Text)

((interest::mg))

Searches field 521a.

Use“::#”as the separator to make this an exact match search.

ISBN

ISBN

(Numeric Value)

((isbn::0760712107))

((isbn::0439064864))

Searches field 020a.

Ignores the “#” (if used) in the separator.

ISSN

ISSN

(Numeric Value)

((issn::0689849974))

Searches field 022a.

Ignores the “#” (if used) in the separator.

language

Language

(Text)

((language::eng))

((language::german))

Searches subfields:

Language Code—41a

Uniform Title—130l, 730l

Language Note—546a.

Use“::#”as the separator to make this an exact match search.

LCCN

LCCN

(Numeric Value)

((lccn::2003002086))

Searches field 010a.

Ignores the “#” (if used) in the separator.

medium

Medium Type

(Text)

((medium::book))

((medium::text--unmediated--volume))

Searches fields:

Title Statment—245h

Content, Media, Carrier Type—336a, 337a, 338a

Use“::#”as the separator to make this a near term search.

notes

Note

(Text)

((notes::ships))

Searches fields:

Content Notes—505a

General Notes—500a

Summary Notes—520a

Use“::#”as the separator to make this a near term search.

pubyear

Pubyear

(Text)

((pubyear::1996))

((pubyear::1950--1955))

Searches fields:

Publication Year—264c

Use“::#”as the separator to make this a begins with search.

rating

Ratings, x' 10

(Numeric Value)

((rating::40))

((rating::50))

((rating::40--50))

Exactly 4 Stars

Exactly 5 Stars

Range, 4 through 5 Stars

savedlist

GUID

(GUID)

((savedlist::5C8E874133AF4058B5527AC5F6B57E63))

((savedlist::0D4E6E52E1444A74BAE4A3E792AA4527))

Returns all titles in a specified saved list.

Do not combine with other types or used with multiple operators.

Ignores the “#” (if used) in the separator.

Saved List GUIDs are found in URLs generated when clicking Share (“”).

series

Series Title/Statement

(Text)

((series::harry) && (series::potter))

((series::boxcar) && (series::children) && (series::mysteries))

((series::hunger) && (series::games) && (series::trilogy))

Searches fields:

Series Statement—490a

Series Uniform Title—830a.

Use“::#”as the separator to make this an exact match search.

smart

Relevancy Ranked Algorithm

(Text)

((smart::harry potter))

((smart::suzanne collins))

((smart::mystery))

Searches on a multitude of fields and orders the results based on a proprietary weighting algorithm. A Smart Search should be used wherever you would normally specify a "keyword" type search.

studyinterestlevel

Study Program Interest Level

(Text)

((studyinterestlevel::mg))

((studyinterestlevel::ad))

Searches fields:

Study Program Interest Level—526b

Target Audience Note—521a, for Lexile Codes

studypointcount

Study Program Point Value, x's 10

(Numeric Value)

((studypointcount::15))

((studypointcount::10--15))

Searches field 526d.

Applies to Accelerated Reader and Reading Counts Only.

studyprogramnamecode

Study Program Name Code

(Numeric Value)

((studyprogramnamecode::1))

Searches by StudyProgram.

Each Study Program is assigned a number:

1=Accelerated Reader

2=Reading Counts

3=Fountas and Pinnell

4=Guided Reading

5=Lexile.

studyreadinglevel

Study Program Reading Level

(Text)

(studyreadinglevel::01.10)
(studyreadinglevel::00200)
(studyreadinglevel::a)
(studyreadinglevel::00500--02000)

Searches fields:

Study Program Reading Level—526c, for Accelerated Reader and Reading Counts

Target Audience Note—521a for all others.

For AR/RC format as: 00.00

For Lexile format as: 00000

For others, format as: x

subjectwords

Subject

(Text)

((subjectwords::united) && (subjectwords::states))

((subjectwords::navy))

Searches fields:

Personal Name—Fields 600a, 600x, 600y, 600z

Corporate Name—610z, 610x, 610y, 610z

Meeting Name—611a, 611x, 611y, 611z

Uniform Title—630z, 630x, 650y, 650z

Geographic Name—651z, 651x, 651y, 651z

Use“::#”as the separator to make this a near term search.

title

Title

(Text)

((title::the) && (title::mystery) && (title::of) &&
(title::the) && (title::stolen) && (title::boxcar))

((title::#holes))

Searches fields:

Translation of Title—242a, 242b

Title Statement—245a, 245b

Varying Form of Title—246a, 246b

Former Title—247a, 247b

Use “::#” as the separator to make this an exact phrase search.

titlecallnumber

Title Call Number

(Text)

((titlecallnumber::793.7))

((titlecallnumber::793.7 ta))

((titlecallnumber::#793.7 tan))

Searches field 991a

Use“::#”as the separator to make this a begins with search.

titlersn

RSN

(Numeric Value)

((titlersn::4139))

Searches for a specific titlersn.

titlersns

RSN

(Numeric Value)

((titlersns::nn,nn,nn))

A comma delimited list of title rsns (e.g. from temp lists).

Copy Query Types & Values

copycallnumber

Copy Call Number

(Text)

((copycallnumber::FIC))

((copycallnumber::FIC EVE))

Searches field 852h

Use “::#” as the separator to make this a begins with search.

copybarcode

Copy Barcode

(Text)

((copybarcode::10456))

((copybarcode::10456--10457))

Searches field 852p

Additional Centralized Catalog Query Types and Values

sitecode

Site Code

(Text)

((sitecode::ams))

The site code assigned by the librarian.

sitersn

RSN

(Numeric Value)

((sitersn::5))

((sitersn::3--5))

The sitersn is the location of a site within the database.

KNOCOPY

KNOCOPY

(Text)

((smart::oz) && (sitersn::1) || (site::KNOCOPY))

When used, KNOCOPY will return electronic items that have no copies. In other words, items that belong to the entire catalog rather than a specific site.

Non-Index Query Parameters

numrecords

Numrecords

(Numeric Value)

((numrecords::10))

Limits the number of items returned in a query.

Has a max limit of 1000 no matter what number is entered.

Separators & Operators

SeparatorsFunction
::Use a double colon (::) as the separator between query types and search values.
::#To perform a special “variant” for search values, use the separator of “::#”. For example, ((series::#Harry Potter)) searches for an exact series match of “Harry Potter”. The way that special variants are handled depends on the individual query type. Although it’s always valid to include the #, it may be ignored in many cases.
OperatorsFunction
&&Performs the Boolean operator AND.
||Performs the Boolean operator OR.
&-Performs the Boolean operator AND NOT.
--Separate terms using two hyphens without spaces (--) to search for a range of results such as dates, ratings, or call numbers. For example: ((copycallnumber::FIC EVA--FIC EVE)).
" "Enclosing words in quotation marks (“ ”) tells Alexandria to interpret the character sequence literally, and not as part of the normal search string syntax. For example, double-hyphens (--) in search strings are interpreted as a range. However, two hyphens also separate subfields in subject headings. Therefore, you must contain certain search phrases in quotations in order to get relevant results, such as ((subject::“Basketball -- Tournaments -- United States”)).

Examples of Combined Types and/or Multiple Operators

Alexandria only accepts a maximum of ten expressions in a single search string.

General Title

((author::rowling) &- (title::harry))
((subjectwords::civil) && (subjectwords::war) && (medium::book))

Smart Search

((smart::harry potter) && (medium::book))
((smart::oz) && (medium::electronic) && (medium::resource))

Accession

((accession::#201501010000))
((accession::201501010000--201601010000))

Combined and Boolean Searches

((smart::animals) &- (smart::birds) || (smart::reptiles))
((series::graphic) && (series::novels) && (medium::electronic) || (medium::ebook))

Rating

((rating::40) && (medium::book))
((rating::30--50) && (author::king))

Study Programs

Accelerated Reader

((studyprogramnamecode::1))
((studyprogramnamecode::1) && (studyreadinglevel::03.00--03.50))
((studyprogramnamecode::1) && (studyreadinglevel::03.00--03.50) && (studypointcount::15--20))

Reading Counts

((studyprogramnamecode::2))
((studyprogramnamecode::2) && (studyreadinglevel::03.00--05.50))
((studyprogramnamecode::2) && (studyreadinglevel::03.00--05.50) && (studyinterestlevel::mg) && (studypointcount::15--20))

Fountas and Pinnell

((studyprogramnamecode::3))
((studyprogramnamecode::3) && (studyreadinglevel::D))

Guided Reading

((studyprogramnamecode::4))
((studyprogramnamecode::4) && (studyreadinglevel::D))

Lexile

((studyprogramnamecode::5))
((studyprogramnamecode::5) && (studyreadinglevel::00300–00500))
((studyprogramnamecode::5) && (studyreadinglevel::00100--00200) && (studyinterestlevel::ad))