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HEINonline allows access to the Law Journal Library collection (academic legal periodicals), as well as the Federal Register Library. Over 370 plus journals are indexed and all documents are provided online in a .pdf format. The coverage dates are from pre-1981 until the present time. Most Journals are covered from their inception.


This database may be accessed from the Electronic Resources Section of the Alvin Sherman Library website.


There are many ways to search HEINonline. The left hand links allow searching by: Journal Title, Article Author, Article Title, Author & Title, and Full Text Search. From the right hand side of the screen users can Browse Journals.

Let's try a Full Text Search for this lesson.

  • Click on Full Text Search on the left hand menu from the opening screen.

Full Text Search selected from the left hand side of GPO.
Full Text Search selected from the left hand side of GPO.

The left hand side of the screen changes after selecting Full Text Search.

  • enter the search term(s) in the search box provided
  • enter desired dates
  • choose all journals or select a journal to search
  • sort final results to display by date or by title of journal
  • click search

HEINonline Full Text Search option.
HEINonline Full Text Search option.

To do a word search enter one or more words in the search field without quotation marks. You can control whether the search is performed for all of the words or any of the words by checking the box as in the below image from the Full Text Search screen.

HEINonline wordsearch.
If you check this box, your word search will find only those pages in the collection that contain all of the words in the search argument.

Search Results

Search results will vary. If you get:

  • No records matched your search, then check your spelling or the fields you searched in.
  • Too many, then go back and limit your search. Sometimes a search needs to be modified with: additional search words, searching only a specific field, adding date limitations, or type of materials.
  • Too few, then go back and expand your search. Consider synonyms for your search words or concepts. Try to use professional language or terminology.
  • Irrelevant results, then try new search terms. Consider synonyms or related concepts. Identify and search using descriptors. Try a different database.
Results lists

The results display on the right hand side of the screen. This search was for "violent crimes" and "florida". The number of times the keywords were found are listed followed by the estimated search time. The results are then listed. To open a particular volume click on the blue underlined link.

Search Results in HEINonline.
Search Results in HEINonline.


After the Search Results display, and a link for an individual document is clicked on the document will open in an HTML format.

Looking at the Search Results record in HEINonline.
Looking at the Search Results record in HEINonline.

Managing Search Results

Databases typically allow you to manage your search results by utilizing the option below:

  • printing your search results list and/or specific records
  • saving your search results list and/or specific records–some databases may allow you to save your file for export into commercial bibliographic citation manager software, such as EndNote or ProCite

Not all search management features are available in all databases.


Marking is not a valid feature within this database.


After the document opens a small menu with round buttons appears at the top of the page.

  • Click the round Print button to print the document.

Choosing to Print in HEINonline.
Choosing to Print in HEINonline.

The Print/Download Utilities screen displays.

  • decide to print either the current page or the entire document
  • click download as PDF
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader will open
  • use the Acrobat Reader grey menu bar to print the document

HEINonline Print/Download utility.
HEINonline Print/Download utility.


There is no email option for HEINonline at this time.


Documents can be saved from the Adobe Acrobat Reader Menu that displays.

In order to save an article:

  • click on the .PDF icon
  • the article will display in the PDF format
  • from the Adobe menu bar choose the save button
  • the computer dialog box will appear
  • save in desired location

Selecting to save the .PDF file from the Adobe Acrobat Reader software menu.
Selecting to save the .PDF file from the Adobe Acrobat Reader software menu.

Search Tips

Use advanced search features to modify a search to obtain more successful search results. You can combine advanced search features to modify and improve your search. Advanced search features often include:

  • date
  • document and/or publication type and
  • Boolean operators

  • Phrase or proximity searching

    In order to phrase search enclose the phrase in quotes.


    "violent crimes" or "criminal justice"


    Boolean operators

    Use AND to narrow a search. AND looks for both terms in the same record.
    leadership and vision; mainstreaming and science

    Use OR to broaden a search. OR looks for either term in the same record.
    mainstreaming or inclusion; elementary education or secondary education

    Use NOT to eliminate records with a certain term.
    Saturn not car; Venus not planet

    Additional Features

    The Federal Register can be selected too from the left hand menu as well. To search the Federal Register click "Federal Register" as shown below.

    Search the Federal Register.
    Search the Federal Register.

    Maintained by the Alvin Sherman Library, Research, and Information Technology Center
    Nova Southeastern University :: Copyright © 2004-2005
    Last updated: 02/13/2009