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Lexis Nexis Academic  

Last Updated: Mar 3, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
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Lexis Nexis Academic

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LexisNexis Academic provides access to full-text news, business, and legal publications, using a variety of flexible search options.  Access over 10,000 news, business, and legal sources. The outstanding news coverage includes deep backfiles and up-to-the-minute stories in national and regional newspapers, wire services, broadcast transcripts, international news, and non-English language sources. Use the included Company Dossier module to retrieve detailed company information and financial performance measures or identify and compare companies matching specific criteria. This product also provides access to the renowned Shepard's Citations® service for all federal and states court cases back to 1789.

Access: Alliant students, faculty and staff members:

From the Alliant Library’ home page, click on Databases then Lexis Nexis Academic. For remote users you will be prompted for your user name (full name) and 14-digit library barcode or ID number. (Pop-ups and cookies will need to be enabled.) If you have not activated your library account please fill out the form located on the library web page or contact your home library so you can be added to the system.   ID cards are generally obtained at your campuses’ student business services.

Lexis Nexis Mobile:

To access the mobile interface select "Mobile" next to the database name.  If already in Lexis Nexis click on the "Beta Tools" section on the left. Then, click "Mobile Interface".

Easy Search – Select Easy Search from the left side of the screen if you just need a quick answer to a simple query or you're not familiar with advanced searching methods or you're not sure which sources to use. Six search areas are available:

  • Search the News– Covers 1980 to today. Enter any terms or phrases, with or without connectors and select a “Source Type” or type in a “Source Title”.Search the News
  • Look Up a Legal Case – covers US and state cases.  Enter “By citation” or “by Parties” or “by Topic”.
  • Get Company Information– covers 43 million citations on companies. Search by company name or by “Ticker”.
  • Research Countries – covers socioeconomic profiles & news.  Search by Country and limit by “Source”.
  • Research People – Covers public figures.  Enter last name (required), first name (optional) and select “Source”.
  • Combined Search – Search multiple kinds of content.  Enter search terms, select date range, and what areas to search.

Tip: click the headings in the left column to view links to specialized search forms and other useful features.  Headings include: News, US Legal, International Legal, Companies, Subject Areas, Sources and Help & Instructions.

Power Search (default) – Power Search is the default and can be used when you need broad flexibility not available on other search forms. You may browse and select specific sources which might not be available on other forms, search sections within a document, choose between natural language and terms & connectors searching (see below for more on Boolean Searching).   You can also click in the “Add Index Terms” section and select additional terms to limit your search in these areas: company, industry, subject, geography, & people.  You can also select a source either by type or name.  When you select a source and additional search box appears where you can select what “segment” of the citation you wish to search.

Boolean Searching – Use Boolean search logic to develop queries that include the terms and phrases that reflect ideas essential to your research, and the optional terms and connectors that let you search for term variations and link your search terms and phrases. Using other options, such as date limitations, wildcard characters, and document section searching, can help shape your search results. Every term (or form of the term) in your search request must appear in the document for that document to be included in your search results.

Boolean Operators

AND—requires both terms to be in each item returned. If one of the terms is present and the other is not, the item is not included in the resulting list. (Narrows the search.)

            Example: stock market AND trading finds stock market trading; trading on the stock market; and trading on the late afternoon stock market

OR—either term (or both) will be in the returned document. (Broadens the search.)

            Example: ecology OR pollution returns documents with Ecology; pollution; ecology….pollution; pollution….ecology

AND NOT—the term following this subtracts any items containing that term from the results. (Narrows the search and can be too exclusive.)

Example: Mexico AND NOT city returns New Mexico; the nation of Mexico; US-Mexico trade; but not Mexico City or this city has trade relationships with Mexico...

Operators work in the following order: OR, W/x, W/p, W/s, AND, Pre/x, AND NOT.

Natural Language searching – Natural language searches let you enter a search in plain English, without having to use any special terms or connectors. The natural language feature’s document relevance ranking gives you quick access to the most pertinent documents in your search results. A typical search with natural language might look like this:

Under what circumstances can biological parents regain custody of adopted children after an adoption?

When should I use these different types of searching?

  • Use Terms and Connectors searching to retrieve the following types of information:
  • Comprehensive information about an issue or topic, or person or company
  • Every word or its alternative that appears in each document
  • Specific relationships between your search words
  • Document section-specific searches
  •  Use Natural Language for the following search tasks:
    • Researching conceptual issues rather than highly specific topics
    • Researching complex issues when you don’t know what words to use
    • Obtaining help in writing a search description, including automatic phrase identification and access to an online thesaurus
    • Supplementing a Terms and Connectors search to ensure thorough results

Specialized Searching:

Date limits can be placed in the search to return only results that fall within, before or after a specified date or range of dates.

Date is After will return material published after the specified date

Date is Before will return material published before the specified date

Date is Between will return materials between a particular publication date range.


  • Click on the “Source” button in the box to the left to view publications indexed in Academic Universe
  • If your search retrieves more than 1,000 items it will only display the first 999.  To the left you will see the sources grouped by category.  You can refine your search by using a more exact term or smaller date range.
  • Searches are case insensitive and returned terms are both singular and plural.
  • Online tutorials and Research Guide Wiki on using Lexis-Nexis are available.  See links on left side of screen.
  • Help button on the top right of screen will give you additional information on how to refine and improve your searches.

View Results:

Results return as a list with 25 to a page. Results are presented in LIST (title and publication information only) format, but may be viewed in EXPANDED LIST, FULL DOCUMENT, FULL with INDEXING, CUSTOM or KWIC (small portion of document with first occurrence of the search terms highlighted) as well.

Sort Results if desired, by publication date, relevance or chronological date.  Default for easy search is relevance. Default for power search is by publication date.

All Results Column – to the left of the search results there is a list of “sources by categories” from category with highest number of results to lowest number of results.  You can click on a category to further limit a search to a particular type of publication.

To save the selected results:

  • Marking items – From the title list click in the box next to the number to “tag”.  From the “full with indexing” (citation/full text) item click in the box in the tan section with the title information and information icon.
  • Click on “Results List” to return to result list from “full with indexing” display.
  • Click on “View Tagged” button to view items selected.

Print/Email/Download – see icons to right of screen for these options.

  • Print—Select print icon.  Default is “full document”.  You can also select a font and option of bolding or underlining search terms.
  • Email – Select email icon.  Same defaults and choices as the print options except you can select your email format option (Word, HTML, PDF, text).
  • Download – Select download icon.  Same defaults and choices as the email options.  Extra step – click on download and then follow instructions for download to hard drive or memory device.
  • Export Bibliographic References – Can only be exported to RefWorks.
  • Copy Document Link -- To paste the link to the results of your search into a document or e-mail, right-click the article title and select Copy Shortcut or Copy Link Location from the resulting pop-up context menu. This copies the link to your search results onto your clipboard. Select your required document or e-mail and press Ctrl + V to paste your copied link.  


This guide is to help you start your research.  For further research assistance please contact your home library or email the help desk at


Rev. 8/11 wl/md



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