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Humanities Index: Searchable Fields

A guide to all aspects of Humanities Index including content, searching, and viewing results on the new ProQuest platform.


The Humanities Index is used to index the Humanities Index subject field. Subject terms are found in the subject field and this field is part of the searchable fields table to the right. Subject terms are also commonly known as descriptors, controlled vocabulary, and sometimes classification terms.

In Humanities Index there are different subject types and in addition to the all encompassing subject field, there is also a separate subject field for company/organization, person, and location. These are also included in the searchable fields table to the right.

The thesaurus allows you to find subject terms to narrow or broaden your search and is available from the Advanced and Command Line Search. If you want to run a search on a subject, but you do not know what term to use, use the thesaurus to search the controlled vocabulary. A hierarchical display is available and will give suggestions on the appropriate subject terms to add to your search.

To use the thesaurus, select the Thesaurus link from the Advanced and Command Line Search, then browse or search for subjects containing the word or beginning with the word. Mark the items that you would like to search and then select the appropriate Boolean operator to combine your items. Click the Add to search button and your terms will be placed into the search form. From there, run your search to include the subject terms (adding additional search fields and terms if needed).

Look Ups and Browsable Indexes

Humanities Index offers three Look ups or browsable indexes, so you can easily find spelling or format variations of, for example, an author's name or a journal title. You can find the Look up links in the advanced search page and they are available for the following searchable fields: author, publication title and subject heading. For a description of these fields, please see the searchable fields table to the right. 

Note: Look ups are also available from the Command Line search (through the Look up terms link).

To use and locate a Look up or browsable index, select the field from the advanced search pull-down menu. If a Look up is available, under the search row you will see a link to theLook up. Other Look ups and browsable indexes will be listed in the Limit To section of the advanced search page.

Select the Look up link and then you will see a browsable and alphabetical index for that field. There are some indexes that will not display an alphabetical list before searching for the term, rather you will have to enter a term first, and then the alphabetical list of matches will display.

Once you locate the index term that you would like to add to your search, mark the item, and then click the Add to search button. The index term will now appear in the advanced search form along with the appropriate pull-down menu selection.

Searchable Fields

Field Name


Search Examples & Explanation





AB(new fictional discourse)

We use the journal-provided abstract with little or no modification, or have members from our editorial team write an abstract from scratch, drawing on the article’s text and concepts. Our team’s goal is to make the article’s point as clearly and succinctly as possible.

Accession Number



Searches both the unique ProQuest document ID (applied to all documents) and the 3rd party document ID or accession number (applied to some databases such as PsycINFO).



ALL(scottish theatre)

ALL searches for keywords in the citation and abstract. It is a full record search, but does not include a search on the full text.




AU(Cox, Brian)

Use to find documents written by a particular author. Try searching on both the full first name and initials in order to retrieve all publications by a specific author. Can be searched as (last name, first name) or (first name last name).

Document Feature



Use to search for features in an article such as charts, diagrams, illustrations, and photographs.

Document Title



TI(modernist literature)

Locates the occurrence of search words in the title of the article.

Document Type DTYPE  

DTYPE(journal article)

Use to retrieve a specific type of document within a publication.





This search field looks for the eight digit International Standard Serial Number (ISSN), where available. Hyphens are optional.




Use to locate the original language of the document.

Publication date



Use to find a specific publication date. Can be searched as:

 (YYYYMMDD) = (19871020)

 (YYYY and month) or (month and YYYY)= (1987 and Oct)

 (YYYY) = 1987

The use of <, >, and – are supported to specify before or after a specific date and a date range.

Publication Title



PUB(early popular visual culture)

Use to search for a specific publication such as the journal or book title.




British Library shelfmark. Very useful if you want to know where to find an item within the British Library.

Source Type STYPE


Use to find a specific source type such as books, newspapers, and scholarly journals.

Subject Heading(All)



Use this to search controlled vocabulary from the Humanities Index thesaurus. For more information on the Humanities Index Thesaurus see the box on the left.