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In order for a search to produce a suitable number of references, it is a good idea to form search strings by combining search terms and by defining their relationships using Boolean operators, proximity operators, phrases and parentheses which dictate the order of performance of a search string. A search string is composed in keeping with the conventions of the chosen database, using its search term truncation symbols and operators. A search string is written as a command search or using a form in the database. In addition, a search can be focused on certain search fields, or restricted in different ways.