This page will help you to get the best out of the site search and help you find the content you are looking for.
Running a quick search
You can do a quick search from anywhere on the website by typing your query or key words into the Seach box at the top of the page:
Add one or more search terms. For example, if you type in Knowledge Exchange the search will look for content which matches either term. The closer your terms are to each other, the higher up matched pages or files will appear in the results.
Searching for an exact phrase
If you wish to search for an exact phrase surround your terms by quotation marks, e.g. "Knowledge Exchange".
Custom Search pages
A number of specific areas on the site offer an additional search filter:
When you open any of these pages you will see a complete listing of all relevant items. Use the search filter to narrow your list down by:
- Date range - specify a start and end date for your search
- Year - specify a year for your search
- Region (if applicable)
- Area of interest
You can use any of these areas to narrow your search or combine them to make your search results even more relevant, for example all consultations from 2014 for the university sector only that are Research related.
Please note: combining the above search search types will search on an AND basis and not OR. This means that, the more filters you use, the more relevant your results should be.
Searching by reference number
An additional reference number search option for sector communications (and press releases before 2014) can be used when you know an item's reference number. This option is intended to be used on its own and cannot be combined with the other search filter areas. Use it when you only want to find one particular item.
How are your results ordered?
Unless you use keywords or phrases as part of your search, all search results are in descending date order, giving you the most recent content first.
If you use keywords or phrases, either on their own or with any of the other filters, results are displayed in order of relevance, with most relevant results first. A number of other factors can also affect your results when searching by keyword:
- The number of times your terms appear in a document
- How close terms are to each other - the closer, the higher the ranking
- Word density, i.e. how often a document contains your terms relative to the length of the document, for example a small document with one hit can be ranked higher than a larger document with more hits. So the item you are looking for may not always appear on the first page of results
If all else fails...
and you still can't find what you're looking for then contact firstname.lastname@example.org with details of what you are looking for.
We are currently doing a major review of the site search and would like to hear from you about your experiences using the search engine. If you have difficulties finding information please let us know so that we can work to improve things.