National Transportation Library Search Tips

Type one or more search terms into the search box and hit "Search"

Quick Search

The quick search is an all keywords search that includes all the words from the Author, Title, Subject, Abstract, and Full text fields. Multiple search terms will be "and"ed automatically.

Use this search if you want to get started quickly with a general search.

Examples:

  • If you enter traffic signals, you will search for documents that have traffic and signals in any of the following fields: author, title, subject, abstract, and full text of the document.
    Note: Traffic and signals do not have to appear in the same field. Traffic could be found in the author and signals in the abstract.
    (kw:traffic AND kw:signals).
  • If you enter commercial vehicle operations, you will search for documents that have commercial and vehicle and operations in any of the following fields: author, title, subject, abstract, and full text of the document.
    (kw:commercial AND kw:vehicle AND kw:operations)

Simple Search

Simple search allows you to search by NTL number, report number, all title keywords, all author keywords, all subject keywords, full text, and all keywords (like the quick search).

Use this search if you have an idea of what you are looking (a certain NTL report or all reports in a certain subject area).

Examples:

  • If you enter traffic signals and choose All Title Keywords, you will search for documents that contain both traffic and signals in the title.
    (tw:traffic AND tw:signals).
  • If you enter commercial vehicle operations and choose All Subject Keywords, you will search for documents that contain all of the terms commercial vehicle operations in the subject field.
    (sw:commercial AND sw:vehicle AND sw:operations)

Browse Catalog

An alphabetical list of titles is available for browsing. You can enter the beginning part of the title in the search box and click on Submit. You will receive a list of titles that begins with your browse term. You can also click on the hyperlinked alphabet below the search box to pull up a list of titles that begins with that letter.

Use this search if you only know the first part of the title.

Examples:

  • If you enter ITS, you will get a list of titles that all begin with ITS
  • If you click on "B", you will get a list of titles that all begin with the letter "B"

Advanced Search

Advanced search allows you to create complex searches by searching in more than one index and using Boolean logic.

Use this search, if you know more information (for example: one of the authors and some words for the title). This is the best search if you want to limit the documents you receive by year or year range.

Examples:

  • If you enter commercial vehicle operations, choose All Subject Keywords and enter 2000-2008, you will search for documents that contain all the terms commercial, vehicle and operations in subject field and were published between 2000 and 2008.
    (sw:commercial AND sw:vehicle AND sw:operations AND yr:2000-2008).

Phrase Searching

If you want results that include an exact phrase, put quotation marks around your search terms.

Examples:

  • If you enter "traffic signals", you will search for all documents where traffic signals appears together (in the order specified) in any of the following fields: author, title, subject, abstract, and full text of the document
    (kw:"traffic signals")
  • If you enter "commercial vehicle operations", you will search for all documents where commercial vehicle operations appears together (in the order specified) in any of the following fields: author, title, subject, abstract, and full text of the document
    (kw:"commercial vehicle operations")

Boolean Searching

You can combine search terms using the Boolean operators AND, OR, NOT. (Note: AND is assumed between words.)

  • The AND operator retrieves records in which all your search terms are present.
  • Using OR broadens your search.
    Example: sw:road weather OR sw:road conditions will find documents with the words road weather in the subject field or the words road conditions in the subject field.
  • Using NOT narrows your search.
    Example: sw:collision NOT sw:avoidance will find documents with the term collision in the subject field and must not have the word avoidance in the subject field.

Command Searching

Command searching works anywhere there is a search box.  The syntax is the search command followed by a colon and the search term.

Command Search Information
Field Names / Search Indexes Command Search Notes
All Keywords kw Includes Author, Title, Subject, Abstract, and Full text
All Author Keywords aw Includes Personal Creator, Personal Name Contributor, Corporate Creator, and Corporate Contributor
All Title Keywords tw Includes title, alternate title, journal title, and conference title.
All Subject Keywords sw Includes general subject, classification, and TRT terms.
Report Number rn  
NTL Number NTL  
Publisher pb  
Abstract ab  
Full Text tt Includes full text of primary URL

Examples:

  • tw:Idaho (will retrieve all the documents with Idaho in the title (alternate title, journal title, and conference title).
  • NTL:753 (will retrieve document with NTL Number 753)
  • aw:polk AND tw:benefits (will retrieve all documents with polk as an author and benefits somewhere in the title).