You can easily search the National College website using keywords. Try to use discriminating terms that are likely to be found only in the documents you seek. The more words you give, the better results you'll get.
Phrases can be entered using quotation marks, which finds words which appear adjacent to each other. Separate multiple phrases or proper names with commas, eg “leading from the middle”, “programme costs”, “Ed Balls”.
Upper and lower case
If you search using lowercase, results will match words in any case.
For example, npqh will find matches for Npqh, NPqH, and NPQH
If you use uppercase in your query, an exact case match is used.
For example, a query for NPQH will only match NPQH.
Identify a phrase
Think of words which are likely to appear together in the document and place within double quotes:
Before: new visions application
After: "new visions" application
The first query is less clear than the second - it could be referring to a new way of applying visions, as well as information about applying for the New Visions programme. The search engine would treat these two cases in distinctly different ways. By identifying "new visions" as a phrase the search engine will select pages where ‘new’ and ‘visions’ appear side by side.
Add a discriminating word or phrase
Adding a discriminating word or a phrase can also help to eliminate ambiguity in your query.
Before: "new visions" application
After: "new visions" application form
You'll get more total results with the second query but the documents displayed first will be more relevant to your query. To get less matches and an even better relevancy, use two phrases here:
“new visions”, “application form”
Capitalise when appropriate
Before: bill gates
After: Bill Gates
This example, when lower case, has a variety of possible interpretations. For example, without capitalisation, bill could refer to a legal document, a bird’s beak or a person’s name. It is always a good idea to capitalise proper names.
If you have experience technical problems with search, please contact the help desk.