CQ Press Encyclopedia of American Government

Help: All CQEL Search

All CQEL Search enables you to search for documents in all CQ Press Electronic Library (CQEL) modules to which your institution subscribes.

Search Specific CQEL Modules

With All CQEL Search, you may simultaneously search for documents in all CQEL modules or only selected modules. Select the “Search Specific Products” radio button, then check the boxes for the CQEL modules you wish to search.

Search Specific Document Types

Each document in CQEL is classified by its type and represented by the icons that follow. To search for specific document types, select the “Search Specific Document Types” radio button, then check the boxes for your chosen document types.

Document Type




Biographical information on significant figures.



Selected sources for further information.

Case Summary

Case Summary

Summary and CQ analysis of major Supreme Court decisions.

Contact Information

Contact Information

Contact information and addresses for governmental and related organizations.

CQ Key Vote

CQ Key Vote

Summary and analysis of CQ Key Vote roll calls in the House and Senate.

Encyclopedia Entry

Encyclopedia Entry

General summaries of issues, concepts, processes, events, and historical figures.

Facts and Figures

Facts and Figures

Tables, graphs, and other statistical information.



A brief definition of a term or a phrase.



Photograph of an individual or event.

Legislative Analysis

Legislative Analysis

Reporting and analysis on legislation.

Primary Source

Primary Source

Full-text or excerpts of primary source material.

Web Links

Web Links

Links to online, open-access sources for additional information.

Search Specific Topics

CQ Press editors have assigned broad topic classifications to all documents in CQEL. To limit your search to documents related to particular topics, select the “Search Specific Topics” radio button, then click the boxes next to your chosen topics.

Search Event Date

Many documents in CQEL are assigned an “event date,” a specific date or year range. By selecting “Event Date” in All CQEL Search, you may focus your search on your chosen time period.

Sorting Your Search Results

On the main Search Form, you may elect to sort your results by relevancy or by title, using the “Sort Results By” drop-down menu. Once on the Search Results page, you may elect to view your results by relevancy, alphabetically by title, by document type, or by event date. By default, your results are sorted according to relevancy.

Displaying Search Results

You may also determine how many search results you want to view per Web page. The default is thirty results per page, but you can choose as few as five results per page or as many as thirty.


Use specific words instead of general ones. For example, a search for school desegregation will return fewer and more targeted results than a search for desegregation.

Use the words and, or, and not as search operators. For example, to search for documents containing the word “confirmation” and the word “hearings,” type confirmation and hearings in the keyword input box. To search for documents containing either the word “confirmation” or the word “hearings,” type confirmation or hearings in the keyword input box.

Use not to narrow your search. If you type ethics not committee in the keyword input box, your search will return only those documents that include the word “ethics” and exclude the word “committee.”

Use quotation marks around a phrase to search for an exact match of those words in sequence. For example, to find the phrase “original jurisdiction,” type “original jurisdiction” in the keyword input box, including the quotation marks. Without the quotation marks, your search will return documents containing the word “original” and the word “jurisdiction,” even if the words are not used together.

Use a wildcard (*). By typing an * (the asterisk symbol) at the beginning or end of a word, you can search for items with multiple prefixes or endings. For example, typing *trust* in the keyword input box will return documents that include the words “trust,” “antitrust,” “trusts,” “antitrust,” and “trustee.”

List of Search Commands and Search Operators



How to Use



Finds one term and a second term

Separate the words with a space, or separate with "and"

original jurisdiction; original and jurisdiction

" "

Finds terms in an exact sequence

Use quotation marks around the sequence

"original jurisdiction"


Finds one term or another term

Separate terms with "or"

House or Senate


Finds one term but not another

Separate terms with "not"

House not Senate


Finds any terms containing a specific sequence of letters

Type the letters, using the asterisk symbol (*) as a wildcard



Finds variations of a term

Replace letters with the ? symbol

wom?n returns woman, women


Finds terms that are within a certain number of words of each other

Place terms in quotations, followed by a "w" and a slash mark (/) and the number of words which can occur between the search terms

senate w/4 hearings returns Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings