British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access

Screen Plays – Search Facility

On searching

The ‘Basic Search’ function uses a single search box to query many fields across the database, such as personal names, theatre companies, titles of plays and series titles (which are broadly understood, from Sunday-Night Theatre to An Age of Kings).

More complex and precise searches are possible using the ‘Advanced Search’ function. In Advanced Search, you can carry out up to three searches to return one set of refined results. Each search can be across all fields, or can be refined to a search of one field in the database using the drop-down menu next to the search box.

All searches rely on you, the user, entering the right search terms to find what you’re looking for. In each of the three search boxes, you can use special words and symbols to refine the text you put in each search box. These are ‘and’, ‘or’ and ‘not’, some symbols like speech marks and asterisk for a ‘stem search’. You can also use the ‘and’, ‘or’ and ‘not’ drop-down menus to build a relationship between each of the three search boxes as well.

You can use ‘sort by’ and ‘results per page’ to decide how you wish to see the search results which are returned.

Once you have selected ‘Advanced Search’ the database will assume you want to use this option every time you choose ‘Search’ from the menu or to start a ‘New Search’ from the search page. To return to the simpler option, click ‘Basic Search’ at the bottom of the search page.

On search results

Search results are first shown in a summary list showing the basic facts of a production in order to enable an overview. Clicking on a production title takes you through to the full record which gives full details about the production (from transmission details to cast and credits), information on what audiovisual and printed sources exist for it, and links to related programmes.