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RELG/JWST 343 - Gender and Judaism

Prof. Chloe Blackshear (Spring 2024)

Subject Terms vs. Keywords

Subject Terms vs. Keywords

Subject terms (or subject headings) are part of a controlled vocabulary specific to a particular set of databases or library catalogues. Subject headings don't always match the language/terminology we would use in everyday speech.

A subject heading is only assigned to an item (that is, a book or article) when the item is specifically about that subject. For example, books with "Marriage" in their subject heading are mainly and specifically on the topic of Marriage. Thus, subject headings can narrow your search if your results are too broad.

Keywords are simply words that can appear anywhere in the title, subject heading, abstract, or even full text of the article. If you search Marriage as a keyword, then you can locate books that mention marriage on a single page or have a short chapter addressing Marriage.

You can also combine keywords and subject headings in the advanced search in any database to narrow or broaden your results.

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