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Introduction to the LEXIS-NEXIS Services for Schools of Library & Information Science. Prepared by: Carol S. Johnson LEXIS-NEXIS Academic & Library Services Manager, Library & Information Science Education. Can use same search logic across services News sources easy to understand

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introduction to the lexis nexis services for schools of library information science

Introduction to the LEXIS-NEXIS ServicesforSchools of Library & Information Science

Prepared by: Carol S. Johnson

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic & Library Services

Manager, Library & Information Science Education

learn using news sources
Can use same search logic across services

News sources easy to understand

Make searching interesting and fun

Three News libraries

NEWS: all news sources

REGNWS: regional news, newspapers

TOPNWS: last two weeks news

Learn Using News Sources
using traditional lexis nexis
Client software

“Classic” interface

Underlying organization and structure for all interfaces

Aids in understanding why and how of L-N functionality, and some of the “quirks”

Using Traditional LEXIS-NEXIS
organization of services
Services structured by organizing databases into LIBRARIES and FILES

Same structure beneath all platforms





Organization of Services
organization of services5
A LIBRARY is a group of related information

A LIBRARY may contain information

of a certain TYPE,

on a specific TOPIC ,

or for a specific GEOGRAPHIC region

Organization of Services
libraries by type
NEWS Library:



Wire Services

Broadcast transcripts


REGNWS Library: Regional News

TOPNWS Library: Recent News (2 weeks)

Libraries by TYPE
libraries by topic
Differenttypes on same topic

GENFED - Federal Case Law, Statutes

COMPNY -- Company information

ENVIRN -- Environmental information

SPORTS -- Sports news, publications, bios

Libraries by TOPIC
libraries by geographic area
Different types of info from same region:

North and South America



Asia Pacific

Some contain non-English language sources

Libraries by GEOGRAPHIC Area
what s in a library
Each LIBRARY contains FILES

TWO types of FILES:


Documents from a single publication, i.e The New York Times is in the NYT file

Materials from one publisher, ex. ABCNEW file contains transcripts from many ABC News shows, including World News Tonight with Peter Jennings, 20/20, Good Morning America

What’s in a LIBRARY?
what s in a library10
GROUP FILE has multiple sources

Large group files: lots of sources

all full-text sources are in ALLNWS file

all newspapers are in the PAPERS file

Small group file: small number of sources

Indiana newspapers in INNWS file

What’s in a LIBRARY?
organization of services11

The text from the source

DOCUMENTS may also be referred to as:




Nomenclature varies by source

We’ll use DOCUMENTS for consistency

Organization of Services
organization of services12
DOCUMENTS consist of WORDS, may be:

Alpha: texas or san antonio

Numeric: 99.44 or 2000

Alpha-numeric: 401K or Y2K

In the LEXIS-NEXIS services, a WORD is any group of characters with a space on either side

Organization of Services
choosing a library and file
Look for area of interest, you may need to use more than ONE library or file

Choose smallest FILE that will give desired results: DON’T search ALLNWS (all news), when you only want a New York Times (NYT) article

In most LIBRARIES, you can combine FILES, separating with commas, for a custom search

Choosing a LIBRARY and FILE
search options
Boolean, using TERMS & CONNECTORS

Essentially the same as other Boolean searching but language, operators and functionality are different in LEXIS-NEXIS

FREESTYLE ™ feature; plain language searching (natural language)

GUIDED FORM: LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe, LEXIS-NEXIS Universe, based on underlying Boolean search

Search Options
search options15
Research Software 7.1.2

Customizable tool bars

Gives options for Searching and Viewing in “Classic” or “Graphical” mode

My favorite:

Search Classic

View Graphical

Search Options
unique searching capabilities
When using LEXIS-NEXIS, user is searching FULL TEXT of documents, not indexes or abstracts

Can restrict search to specific portion (called SEGMENT) if user wishes

Use same search logic through services, even with different interfaces

Unique Searching Capabilities
boolean searching
Original LEXIS-NEXIS search logic

Still used most by many customers

Allows precision searching

Favorite of most information professionals, librarians and researchers

This is what every librarian and future librarian should learn first!

Boolean Searching
boolean search basics
Select an appropriate LIBRARY

Choose an appropriate FILE

Select the smallest FILE that will give the results you need

Enter a SEARCH composed of WORDS

Don’t be intimidated by LIBRARY/FILE acronyms; type number to the right of Library or FILE name to see description

Boolean Search Basics
boolean search basics19
Choose appropriate search words to define what you’re looking for

Simplify the search words

Connect the search words

Restrict your search results to a particular time frame (date restriction)

Confine your search to a part of a document (segment searching: segment = field)

Boolean Search Basics
what s a word
A group of characters with a space on either side; may be alpha or numeric; i.e. _XXX_

Most punctuation is recognized as a space, i.e. John D. Rockefeller, 401-K

An exception is the “embedded period”

(a period not having a space on either side, which is viewed as a character)

i.e. A.J. Foyt, 99.44

What’s a WORD?
words to avoid
NOISE WORDS: so called because they are so common inclusion adds no value

Personal pronouns (he, she, they)

Most forms of the verb “to be” (be, is, was)

Some conjunctions (and, as, because)


words used as part of search logic (and, or) or

to identify features (lexsee, autocite)

Words to Avoid
choose search words
Make a list of words that describe topic of interest

Include alternatives (synonyms, antonyms)

Avoid words that are too general

Think as if you were writing the document; what words would you include

Adjacent words are treated as a phrase

Choose Search Words
plurals possessives
Automatically searches for plural and possessive forms of most regular words, i.e. if word is made plural by adding s or es or changing final letter y to ies; for example: boy finds boys, boy’s, boys’

Does not search for irregular plurals; i.e. if word ends in us or is or other irregular plural form; child does not find children

Plurals & Possessives
compound words
Compound words using a hyphen are sometimes treated as a single word, but not always

Be safe: enter both variations, i.e. anti-trust and antitrust

Authors aren’t necessarily consistent!

Compound Words
simplify search words
Universal characters let you include all variations of a word without entering each

*holds a space for one character; may be used in middle or at end of a word; wom*n finds woman, women, woman’s and women’s

! may be used only at the end of a word root to find that root plus all variations; recycl! finds recycle, recycling, recyclable, etc..

Simplify Search Words
join words connectors
OR - finds either or both search terms; used for synonyms, antonyms or alternative expressions

g.m. or gm or general motors

bush or gore

stock or share or equity

join words connectors27
W/n - proximity connector; finds documents with words that are within some number (n) of each other (does not work across segments)

bush w/10 cocaine

Tip: ALWAYS use betweenfirst and last name, george w/2 bush; bill w/2 clinton

join words connectors28
AND - both search terms in each document

clinton and gore

general motors and market share

Order of operation:


W/n (Remember n = number; n = 1-255)


date searching
On a date:date is

Spell out the word isor

use the arithmetic operator =

date is 2000

date = January 15, 2000

date = 1/2000

NOTE: System assumes two-digit years are within past 100 years

Date Searching
date searching30
After a date:date aft

Abbreviate out the word aftor

use the arithmetic operator > (greater than)

date aft 1999

date > Aug. 19, 1999

date > 10/99

NOTE: Month names and numbers are equivalents; use the American convention

Date Searching
date searching31
Before a date:date bef

Abbreviate out the word befor

use the arithmetic operator < (less than)

date aft 1999

date > August 19, 1999

date > 8-99

NOTE: Systems recognizes either dash or slash

Date Searching
date searching32
Combine operators to search between two dates

date aft AND date bef or

date > and date <

Date aft 1993 and date bef Sept. 1995

NOTE: Aft 6/30/99 does not include that date; aft 2000 would get nothing now!

Date Searching
special operators
Parentheses ( ): use to assure that system groups words separated by a connector

For example: (channel w/2 tunnel) or chunnel or (ken! w/2 starr) or (bill w/2 clinton)

Quotation marks “ ”: use to search reserved words when reserved word is first or only word in the search

For example: “lexsee”

Special Operators
running a search
Sign on

Enter ID (on card attached to tent card)

Enter CLIENT ID to identify search


Choose FILE

Enter SEARCH TERMS (transmit = Enter)

Retrieve RESULTS

Running a Search
display and review results
LEXIS-NEXIS gives options:

Buttons on Tool Bar

Pull Down Menus

Short Cuts (Dot Commands: on back of ID card)

Choose what works best for you!

Display and Review Results
displaying search results
KWIC: search terms highlighted, with a small block of text on either side (.kw)

FULL: full-text of the document (.fu)

CITE: bibliographic list of documents (.ci)

VAR KWIC: larger block of text than KWIC, can be customized (.vk or .vkn)

SEGMTS: views portion of document (.se)

LEAD: lead paragraph of news stories (.le)

Displaying Search Results
reviewing search results
For most sources (including news), results display in reverse chronological order

Next page (.np)

Previous page (.pp)

First page (.fp)

Next document (.nd)

Previous document (.pd)

First Document (.fd)

Reviewing Search Results
other commands
New Search (.ns): same LIBRARY & FILE

Change FILE (.cf): keep LIBRARY selected

ChangeLIBRARY (.cl): choose different one

Segments command (.se), has three uses:

1) After search to display in SEGMENTS format or

2) After file selection to view SEGMENTS to search

3) at FILE screen, get FILE PRICES (not in MLS account)

Sign off(.so): exit the LEXIS-NEXIS services

Other Commands
running a search39
Search #1:

Library: NEWS


Type search into Command Line of software

Search: san antonio and american library association or ala

Save search for future use: .keep

Running a Search
running a search40
Search #2:

Library: NEWS

File: 90DAYS

Search: indiana or ohio or michigan w/10 snow

Review results using KWIC, FULL & CITE

Navigate results using NEXT PAGE, NEXT DOCUMENT, PREVIOUS PAGE, etc.

Running a Search
modifying a search
When you don’t get the results you want:

Modification changes the original search

Type m and press ENTER; search will display

Type a connector, usually AND, followed by new search words and press ENTER

Type .log; click on san antonio search

Modify to add: AND ala w/5 president

Modifying a Search
using the focus feature
FOCUS™ does not change original search

“A search within a search”

Always narrows results of answer set

FOCUS™ multiple times on same search

Retains original answer set

Command: focus or .fo

Using the FOCUS™ Feature
using the focus feature43
Type .log, click on snow search

FOCUS on ski! condition

Only highlights terms in your focus search

Can FOCUS again, or execute EXIT FOCUS command (.ef)

Using the FOCUS™ Feature
using the focus feature44
To highlight original search terms and focus terms, use Ctrl Q to bring original search terms into Command Line

Add focus terms, can use connectors, make changes to original terms & connectors

type: and ski! condition

.ef to exit

Using the FOCUS™ Feature
when you can t use focus
Although FOCUS is available in most of the services, it can’t be used:

Answer set has more than 1,000 documents (can’t retrieve > 1,000 documents in educational menu)

QUOTE library (not in educational menu)

When you CAN’T use FOCUS
modify or focus which to use
Use Modify to:

Start with broad search

Add additional words

Refine search

Save retyping search to make small changes

Add a date restriction

Expand search

Use FOCUS to:

Run new search words against current answer set

Highlight different words in document than in the original search

Save original search and return to it

Modify or FOCUS - which to use
segment searching
A SEGMENT is a part of a document

SEGMENTS vary depending on SOURCE

SEGMENTS for NEWS documents might include HEADLINE, BYLINE, COMPANY, etc.

Proximity connectors (w/n) do not work across SEGMENTS

Segment Searching
segment searching48
Great for precision searching

Find words in a specific part of document

NEWS;90DAYS;hlead(ala or american library)

Browse documents

modify or focus, if you choose

Find pictures of Barbara Bush’s dog

NEWS;ALLNWS;graphic(millie and dog)

Segment Searching
saving your search results
Print one screen at a time

Download screen by screen using “session record” feature

Print or download an entire document

Print or download a list of documents

Full document print and/or download will occur after you sign off the online session

Saving Your Search Results
print now online printing
Permits print or download requests to be completed while you are still online.

No more waiting for sign off

After using Print Doc or Print All and confirming request, invoke Print Now command by entering .pn

Follow messages on screen

Print Now - Online Printing
print now online printing51
Research session is suspended while request is delivered

Once print delivery is completed, a Print Summary screen displays

Press ENTER at the Print Summary screen to return to the place in your research at which you invoked Print Now

Print Now - Online Printing
the online guide
Description of library & file contents

Lists of sources in group files

Dates of coverage

Frequency of updates

Segments within sources

Name & address of publisher

Library and files where source is found

The Online GUIDE
how to use guide
GUIDE is two related features:

The GUIDE (.gu) command

Provides a description of the library or file in which you are searching

To use, type .gu after choosing library or file

The GUIDE library

Use LINK markers or SEARCH entire GUIDE

How to use GUIDE
when you need help

Click on Customer Service

Customer Service Knowledge Base

Source Locator

Download Software

Product Literature

When You Need Help
strengths of lexis nexis
Most breadth and depth of any online service

Search logic same in all parts of service

Full text searching

Many feature/function options

Permits broad searching

Allows retrieval of very precise results

Strengths of LEXIS-NEXIS
lexis nexis academic universe
The power of LEXIS-NEXIS in an easy-to-use web interface

Accessible through most web browsers

Sold for campus-wide use; remote access via proxy servers

May be used by students, faculty & staff

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe57


Legal Research



LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe58
Combines power of L-N with guided form interface

End-user oriented, focus on undergraduate research needs

Provide relevant, manageable answer set

Each form has underlying Boolean search

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe59
Don’t need to know structure or organization of L-N to get good results!

Easy source selection via pull-down menus

Easy date restriction:

- Preconfigured date ranges

- Radio buttons for customized dates

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe60
Basic form

Keyword: entry required; searches only in HEADLINE and LEAD PARAGRAPH

Additional terms: AND connector built in; searches FULL TEXT

Can use Boolean operators in either box

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe61
More options

Lets user customized search

Restrict terms to specific SEGMENT, or


Restrict to one or more publications

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe62
Multiple options for HELP, including

On screen explanations

“How do I?” and “HELP” buttons



Source list links

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe
lexis nexis academic universe subscribed to by all institutions with mls except
Clark Atlanta Univ.

North Carolina Central

Pratt Institute

Rutgers University

University of Alabama (Birmingham YES; Tuscaloosa NO)

University of Hawaii

University of Iowa

University of North Texas

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe Subscribed to by all institutions with MLS, except:
lexis nexis academic universe66
Should be service of choice if your school of Information Science has an Undergraduate program

Is an excellent introduction to L-N in an easy-to-use format!

It’s so easy that I use it for quick searches, especially in news sources!

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe