Advanced Search Strategy Design for Complex Topics: Strategy Development, Text Analytics and Text Mining Training Day, University of York

This course looks at how to design complex search strategies and complements our training on advanced search techniques. As the volume of published research grows it is becoming more challenging to identify efficiently studies performed according to specific methods or relating to broad topics. As well as increasing volumes of research, many research topics are complex and challenging to capture in search strategies. Examples of complex topics may include, but are not limited to, reviews of complex interventions, reviews requiring the identification of study designs other than RCTs, public health and social care topics, veterinary literature, food and feed safety research.

Information professionals and others wishing to develop search strategies for complex topics face challenges in designing strategies which retrieve relevant material but are also efficient in numbers of records retrieved. As well as approaches to developing strategies to run in traditional bibliographic databases, increasingly text analytical software and text mining techniques are being used to interrogate large literatures. These techniques can be used to identify concepts in complex topics and assist with developing strategies to capture complex topics.

This training event will address the challenges of developing search strategies to capture complex topics in large bibliographic databases using different conceptual combinations and search techniques. The training event will also introduce textual analytic and text mining techniques to demonstrate their potential for strategy design and testing. Participants will undertake exercises using open source visualisation tools to investigate terms within sets of records.

This advanced search course complements our Advanced Search Techniques For Systematic Reviews, Health Technology Assessment and Guideline Development Training Course

Course Details

Date:  This course ran October 2016 and will run again in 2017. To be notified of course date release please email
Courses also run on-demand for large groups.
Price: TBD

The training course presenters will be Julie Glanville, Carol Lefebvre and Steven Brewer.
Julie Glanville is an Associate Director at York Health Economics Consortium, University of York. Carol Lefebvre is an Independent Information Consultant and Director of Lefebvre Associates Ltd. Steven Brewer is the Managing Director of Text Mining Solutions Limited.

Julie and Carol are long-term collaborators who have developed and published search filters to identify RCTs and systematic reviews. They are also editors of the InterTASC Information Specialists’ (ISSG) Search Filter Resource website and co-convenors of the Cochrane Information Retrieval Methods Group. Steven Brewer offers text mining services to a range of clients in many subject fields. Julie, Hannah and Steven have collaborated on the use of textual analytics and text mining for developing systematic review searches.

All courses are held at the University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD.
For more details about when this course will run in 2017, please email or telephone +44 (0)1904 324084 or telephone +44 (0)1904 323620 for more details
Please see the frequently asked questions page for more general course information.

Workshop overview

Download provisional course agenda

By the end of the training day, participants will have:

  • An awareness of how to approach complex search strategy design;
  • An awareness of the approaches typically used in textual analytics and text mining applications;
  • An understanding of the opportunities for using textual analytics and text mining approaches to develop strategies in complex or hard to define questions.
Please note: this advanced search techniques course complements our Advanced Search Techniques For Systematic Reviews, Health Technology Assessment and Guideline Development course.

YHEC Training Expertise

YHEC offers a range of training courses in health economics topics including economic modelling, evidence retrieval and information skills

Our regular training programme offers courses in York in well-equipped rooms and computer classrooms.  All of our courses have limited delegate places available to ensure that sessions permit discussion and interaction within the group. We can also offer these courses and bespoke courses at your own site.

Other Health Economics Training at York: YHEC courses are generally introductory. Five-day expert workshops, distance learning and MSc courses in health economics are offered by health economists at the Centre for Health Economics and the Department of Economics and Related Studies at the University of York.

Advanced Search Techniques

Find out about our complementary advanced training course

Advanced Search Techniques