Answered By: Mary-Ann Anderson
Last Updated: Sep 25, 2018     Views: 90

Truncation is a searching technique used in databases in which a word ending is replaced by a symbol. Frequently used truncation symbols include the asterisk (*), a question mark (?),  exclamation marks (!) or a dollar sign ($) which will search alternative endings to a word.

For example, "Austral*" will search for the following words:

  • Australia
  • Australian
  • Australian's
  • Australians
  • Australasian.

Please consult the help menu of the database you are using for information on how they use trunctators.

CheckLIST: Library Information Skills Toolkit: Module 3 Searching for Information covers the basics of searching for information, including choosing the right source, identifying keywords, and employing search techniques.