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Research Guides

ATLA Religion Database

This guide will help you search the ATLA database more effectively.

1a. Advanced Search

This is the default search page. Enter your search term(s) within the box(es) (1) and choose what field you would like to search from the drop-down menu (2), such as Title, Subject, etc.  (“Select a Field” is the default for Keyword searching.) Click Search.

NOTE: The relationship between the terms/ search boxes is automatically set to AND  (3) meaning each term must be present somewhere in the citation. Change the relationship between the terms by choosing a different operator from the dropdown menu:


OR= either one or the other term(s) must be present

NOT= the first term must be present, but the following term(s) must not be present

1b. Examples of Searching


Keyword Searching:  Note that a Record refers to the fields (title, author, journal title, subject, etc.) in the citation.


Type of Search


ATLA Searches for:


Single word




Records with the word slavery





liberation theology


Records with the words liberation followed by theology







Records with either slave, slaves, or slavery




slavery and New Testament


Records with the words slavery and new testament anywhere in the record.




poor or poverty


Records with either of the words poor or poverty anywhere in the record.




baptists not southern;


luther, martin not king



Records with the word Baptists but excluding records with southern;

Records with Martin Luther but not Martin Luther King



(   )


theology and (poor or poverty)


Records with the words theology and poor, or theology and poverty anywhere in the record.