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EDS: Ebsco Discovery Service

A general users guide to using the EDS service.

When should I use EDS?

EDS is a great place to start your research. It helps you quickly find relevant resources on a subject, without having to decide which database(s) to search. You can limit your search results in a variety of ways, including date range, source type, subject, and scholarly designation. The library's cataloged resources are also integrated into the search results, which makes EDS a good place to check to see if the library has the full text of a journal article or a book that you desire.

Pratt Collection

Don't want to mess with results from OhioLink, or Ebsco databases?  Use the "Pratt Library Catalog" limit under the "Content Provider" section on the left hand page of your results.  This will limit your results to only items held by Pratt Library and the University of Cincinnati!

Tips for Searching

  • EDS’ default search treats all terms you enter in a search box as though they are joined with AND. For example, if you enter: migraine ocular pediatric, EDS will find items that contain all 3 terms.  To combine your terms in other ways (such as OR or NOT), use the advanced search.
  • To improve the relevancy of your search results, enclose phrases in "quotation marks". For example:  "skull fracture" or "underserved adolescents".
  • Narrow your search by using the limits on the left hand side of the search results screen. You can narrow your search by date, subject, database, source type, language, library collection/location, etc.
  • If there is an apostrophe in your search term, include it.  For example, use "Parkinson's disease" -- not "Parkinsons disease"
  • To find variant endings for a word, use the * asterisk (truncation symbol.)  For example:  parent* finds parents, parenting, parenthood, etc.

Limiting Results

EDS automatically applies two expanders to every search- "Also search within the full text of the articles" and "Apply equivalent subjects"- this helps to find more comprehensive results for a search.  However, this can also create a daunting number of search results.  You can easily remove these expanders under the "Refine Results" column to the left of your search result list.

When should I NOT use EDS?

To take advantage of the richest features of a database, including the subject thesaurus or specialized limiters, you may choose to search a specific subject relevant database.  For example, Business Source Complete, PsycINFO, and PubMed have powerful features only available in their unique interfaces.

EDS Relevancy Ranking

Why do search results appear in the order that they do?  Ebsco employs a comprehensive relevance ranking strategy.  For more specific details on Ebsco's relevance ranking strategy click here.

Search History Tip

Are you an advanced user?  Have you noticed that in your displayed "Search History" certain limits are not registering a new search in your History feed?  This is because currently source type facet selections are not added to Search History. Source types do not execute a new search like the clusters/facets do, and consequently are not added to search history. Source types just act as a filter to the original search, and this is the intended functionality.

Contact Us


Phone: (513) 636-4320

Office Location S9.125

Pratt Library Staff is available via phone, website and email: Mon - Thurs: 9:30am - 5:00pm Fri: 9:00am - 4:30pm or by appointment.